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Bello orders arrest of six ‘thugs’ over attack on Kogi Senator Echocho inside Govt House

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Bello orders arrest of six 'thugs' over attack on Kogi Senator Echocho
• Senator Jibrin Isah Echocho (Kogi East)
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Governor Yahaha Bello has ordered the arrest of six persons believed to be political thugs, who reportedly attacked the member representing Kogi East Senatorial District at the National Assembly, Senator Jibrin Isah Echocho at the Government House in Lokoja on Tuesday.

The senator elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC, was said to have been assaulted by the thugs loyal to the state government in the presence of other National Assembly members he came with to congratulate the outgoing governor for the success of the party in the last governorship election.

He was reportedly singled out for the embarrassing attack for failing to adhere to Governor Bello’s directive that all APC chieftains should ensure the victory of the party in their immediate constituencies during the gubernatorial poll.  Echocho, as learnt, was unable to deliver his senatorial district to the APC, as his people (the Igalas) voted massively for the Social Democratic Party, SDP governorship candidate, Alhaji Murtala Ajaka.

Echocho, who was with Senator Sunday Karimi and other members of House of Representatives from the state, was in the Government House when the thugs surprisingly approached him and began to rain verbal abuses accusing him of betraying Governor Bello.

But for the intervention of some of his colleagues on the visit, the senator would have been harmed even as security operatives attached to the Government House allegedly looked the other way when the thugs descended on the lawmaker.

The news of the attack on the senator, who had once demonstrated his absolute loyalty to Bello by kneeling before him in a viral video, attracted angry reactions among members of the APC and the public Tuesday night. They described the report as another round of humiliation for the senator, demanding an urgent investigation to bring the culprits to book.

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However, in an official reaction to the embarrassing incident, Governor Bello, on Wednesday, ordered the arrest of six persons said to be responsible for harassing “some National Assembly members” during the courtesy visit to the Governor’s office.

The  Advocate learnt that the governor consequently banned unauthorized persons from accessing the Government House and ordered immediate prosecution of the culprits.

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Shortly after the fruitful discussion with the visiting National Assembly members, the governor  said he received with rude shock the news of the harassment of some of the lawmakers on their way out of the government house and swiftly ordered the arrest of the culprits.

He charged security agencies to investigate the issue thoroughly to ensure the offenders face the full wrath of the law.

Bello’s directive to the heads of security agencies reads: “Information just got to me as I left the office to the residence that one man called Suleiman and others embarrassed Sen Jubrin Echocho in Government House. I’ve directed CSO to arrest all those involved in such stupid act and bring them to justice immediately. I will NEVER condone act of hooliganism and indiscipline.
Thank you sir”.

The federal lawmakers who visited the governor at the Government House on Tuesday were Senator Jibrin Isah Echocho of Kogi East, Senator Sunday Karimi of Kogi West, Rt Hon Abdullahi Ibrahim Halims of Ankpa Federal Constituency, Hon Zachariah Idris of Idah Federal Constituency, Hon Sani Abdulrahim Egidi of Ajaokuta Federal Constituency, Hon Abdulrahim Danga (PDP) of Okehi/Adavi Federal, Hon Gowon Haruna of Dekina/Bassa Federal Constituency, Hon Tijani Ozigi of Okene/Ogori Federal Constituency, Hon Danladi Aguye of Lokoja/Koto Federal Constituency and Hon Salman Idris (ADV) of Kabba/Ijumu.

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The senator representing Kogi Central, Natasha Akpoti of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, was not in attendance.

How thugs attacked me in Kogi Govt House — Sen Echocho

Meanwhile, the senator representing Kogi East in the National Assembly, Isah Echocho narrated how thugs attacked him inside the Government House, Lokoja, Kogi State.

The lawmaker, in a telephone interview with Daily Trust, said the incident happened on Tuesday immediately after a meeting with the governor.

Echocho said himself, Senator Sunday Karimi (Kogi West) and other All Progressives Congress federal lawmakers from the state had gone to pay homage to the governor after the festive season.

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He said the thugs singled him out of other legislators and pounced on him, accusing him of being responsible for APC’s poor performance in the last governorship election in Kogi East senatorial district.

Though APC’s Usman Ododo won the election with 446, 237 votes, his main challenger, Murtala Ajaka of the Social Democratic Party, who came second, won the majority of his 259,052 votes in Kogi East Senatorial District.

Both Ajaka and Echocho are from Kogi East Senatorial District.

 

 

Echocho said the attackers berated him for not working for the success of APC in Kogi East during the poll.

The lawmaker, however, said he did not suffer any injury as the police officers present provided him security and he had since returned to Abuja safely.

Narrating how the incident happened, the senator said, “I was attacked by thugs in Government House Lokoja but the police rescued me.

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“What happened was that all APC senators and the House of Representatives members from the state visited the governor on a courtesy call for the New Year.

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“Being one of them, I was not left out. We went up and we had some brief meeting with the governor, though he expressed dissatisfaction over APC performance in Kogi East (my senatorial district) in the last governorship election.

“I told the governor that I tried all I could to convince my people to vote for the APC. I campaigned vigorously for APC in Kogi East but the people were resolute in voting for another candidate despite my efforts.

“It is not as if APC performed woefully in the election in Kogi East. There were pockets of LGs and wards that we won. There was no other thing I could have done beyond what I did. We exchanged pleasantries with the governor, took a group photograph and left.

“As we were coming out, in front of the governor’s office, the thugs pounced on me, that I was responsible for APC’s failure in Kogi East.

“To my surprise, they brought out knives and other dangerous weapons to attack me but police officers around were able to rescue me inside my vehicle and we zoomed off. I thank God I didn’t suffer any injury. The police were able to provide sufficient security.”

When asked if the governor was aware of the attack, he said: “The governor cannot descend so low and send thugs to attack me.

“The governor spoke with me after the attack, and he assured me that the thugs would be arrested and made to face the full wrath of the law, but I told him not to worry since I’m safe.”

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When contacted for comment, the Kogi State Commissioner for Information, Kingsley Fanwo did not respond to a message sent to him and did not answer several calls to him.

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Peter Obi should be held responsible for anarchy arising from August 1 hunger protest – Presidency

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Bayo Onanuga
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Bayo Onanuga, a senior to President Bola Tinubu, has alleged that supporters Mr Peter Obi, former presidential candidate of the Labour Party, LP, are planning mayhem in Nigeria.

Onanuga claimed that the proposed nationwide protests were being planned by Obi’s supporters, whom he described as failed presidential candidate.

According to him, Obi should be held responsible for whatever crisis that would emanate from the action.

In a post on his X handle on Saturday, Onanuga said the proposed protest planners are also the same people who were instigated by the incarcerated IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu to launch the destructive ENDSARS protest in Nigeria in October 2020.

He wrote: “REVEALED: Peter Obi’s supporters are the people planning mayhem in Nigeria: Obi should be held responsible for anarchy

“Don’t be fooled: the malcontents planning to stage nationwide protests are supporters of Peter Obi, the failed presidential candidate of the Labour Party. And he should be held responsible for whatever crisis emanates from the action.

“The protest planners are also the same people who were instigated by IPOB leader Nnamdi Kanu to launch the destructive ENDSARS protest in Nigeria in October 2020. ENDSARS began as a genuine protest by youths against the Police Special Anti-Robbery Squad, notorious for its high-handedness. IPOB members planning to extricate the South East region from Nigeria infiltrated the protest and hijacked it for their own agenda. Lagos still bears the scar of the malicious destruction by IPOB elements until today.

“Two years after ENDSARS, the IPOB and the gullible innocents joined the Labour Party in 2022 to support Peter Obi, a sympathiser of their cause.

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They are the people spreading the hashtags ‘EndBadGovernance’, ‘Tinubu Must Go,’ and ‘Revolution2024’. They are not democrats but anarchists. They are attempting to call out our people via propaganda because their Messiah, Peter Obi, failed to win the Presidency in the 2023 election. As bad losers, they don’t have the patience to wait for another election in 2027; they would rather destabilise Nigeria by staging a civilian coup against President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

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Two brothers drown in FCT River

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Two brothers drown in FCT River
•The river behind the village
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Two brothers, Joshua and Samson, have drowned in a river in Robukya community in Kwali Ward in Kuje Area Council of the FCT.

A relation of the deceased, Musa Abednego, who confirmed the incident to our reporter on Thursday, said it happened on Tuesday around 9am while they were crossing the river.

He said the brothers, Joshua and Samson, were between the ages of nine and 12 and that they were on their way to the farm when the incident happened.

He explained that the victims got drowned following a heavy rainfall which made the river to overflow.

He said, “Their father asked them to hold on after the rain subsided. Unfortunately, they left home to the farm without him knowing.”

Abednego said their corpses were recovered on Wednesday around 4pm through the help of some fishermen, adding they had been buried.

The spokeswoman of the FCT Police Command, SP Josephine Adeh, was yet to speak on the incident.                                              Daily Trust

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CBN intervenes in foreign exchange market

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CBN intervenes in foreign exchange market
Central Bank of Nigeria
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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has started selling foreign exchange on a regular basis through Authorised Dealer Banks and licensed Bureaux De Change (BDCs) as a response to the current fluctuations in the foreign exchange market.

These fluctuations are primarily caused by the demand pressure coming from corporate entities and the seasonal increase typical during the summer period.

By implementing regular sales of foreign exchange, the CBN aims to stabilise the market and ensure smoother transactions for both businesses and individuals involved in foreign exchange activities.

Director, Financial Markets Department of the CBN Dr Omolara Omotunde Duke in a statement on Friday night assured the public of the bank’s commitment to address the demand pressure and stabilize the foreign exchange market.

Highlighting recent transactions, the CBN disclosed that it sold a total sum of US$106,500,000.00 to 29 authorized dealer banks on Thursday, July 18 and Friday, July 19, 2024.

These transactions took place within an exchange rate range of N1,498.00/US$1 to N1,530.00/US$1. Additionally, the CBN purchased US$9,500,000 (Nine Million and Five Hundred Thousand Dollars) from four authorized dealer banks at rates between N1,510.00/US$1 and N1,550.00/US$1. All these transactions are marked for settlement on July 19, 2024.

The Central Bank also stated its commitment to closely monitor compliance with existing trading rules and regulations by authorized dealer banks. This is seen as an effort to promote ethical conduct and ensure stability in the foreign exchange market.

The general public was also advised to direct their foreign exchange demands to their respective banks and BDC operators, adhering to prevailing market regulations.

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With the regular sale of foreign exchange and ongoing monitoring of trading practices, the CBN aims to meet demand pressure, foster stability, and sustain a well-functioning foreign exchange market.

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