Good morning Nigeria, welcome to Naija News roundup of top newspapers headlines in Nigeria for today, Monday, 10th January 2022
President Muhammadu Buhari has directed the National Caretaker and Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to immediately prepare the schedule/timetable for the national convention.
Recall that the Chairman of the Northern Governors Forum and Governor of Plateau State, Simon Lalong, had disclosed that the president would meet with APC governors on Sunday over the party’s national convention.
Speaking with State House correspondents after a meeting with the president, Lalong said the leaders will discuss the convention slated for February and other matters affecting the party.
A source close to the APC governors told ThisDay that Buhari had asked the committee led by Governor Mai Mala Buni of Yobe State to submit the prepared schedule before Friday.
Following the president’s directive, the source said the caretaker committee will meet on Tuesday to prepare the timetable and submit it to the president for approval.
Speaking further, the source said that the governors were divided on the issue of holding the convention next month or postponing the event.
The details of the meeting between Abia State Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu and former Governor of the State, Orji Uzor Kalu have emerged.
A statement on Sunday by the State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Barrister Eze Chikamnayo said the two leaders discussed how to work together and move Abia State forward.
As earlier reported by Naija News, Governor Ikpeazu of Abia State on Friday met behind closed doors with the Senate Chief Whip, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu.
In a statement released by Kalu’s media office in Abuja, the governor hosted the Senate Chief Whip at his country home in Umuobiakwa, Obinngwa Local Government Area of the state.
The details of their meeting have now been obtained by this online news platform as contained in the statement by Barrister Chikamnayo.
He said Senator Kalu commended the Abia State Governor for ensuring peace throughout the Christmas and New Year celebrations.
He urged Ikpeazu to do more as touching infrastructural developments in the state.
On the part of the Governor, the statement quoted him to have appreciated his guest for working with his government to deliver dividends of democracy to the people of Abia despite their political differences.
A former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode has condemned the killing of over 60 persons in villages in Zamfara State.
In a series of posts on his Twitter page on Sunday, Fani-Kayode called on the Nigeria Air Force to carpet-bomb bandits hideouts in the Northwest.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) urged the federal government to deploy the newly-acquired American Tucano jets to destroy bandits.
Former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and ex-presidential candidate, Professor Kingsley Moghalu has submitted that only a competent government can end the killings and other cases of insecurity in Nigeria.
According to him, life in Nigeria has become so valueless under the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari and action needs to be taken to address the situation.
Moghalu stated this in his reaction to the recent killing of several persons in some villages of Zamfara State during which incident many houses were also burnt.
Naija News recalls that many people were killed in bandits’ attack on some Zamfara villages with many houses also set ablaze.
Some of the reports had it that up to 200 people were killed during the attacks.
Some of the communities attacked by the terrorists include Kurfa Danya, Kurfa Magaji Rafin Gero, Tungar Isa, and Barayar Zaki in Bukkuyum and Anka Local Government Areas of the state.
Reacting via a statement on his Twitter page, Moghalu while commiserating with victims of the attack as well as their families submitted that such occurrences will only end when a competent government is in place.
Senate President, Ahmad Lawan and Speaker of House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, have been sued over an alleged missing N4.1bn National Assembly funds.
Naija News reports that the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) sued the National Assembly leadership over the audited report of the Auditor-General of the Federation released recently.
In the audited report, the AUGF alleged diversion and misappropriation of public funds and sought the recovery of any missing funds.
In a suit number, FHC/ABJ/CS/1609/2021 filed at the Federal High Court in Abuja, SERAP is suing Lawan and Gbajabiamila over their failure to probe, and to refer to appropriate anti-corruption agencies alleged missing NASS funds.
SERAP in the suit filed by its lawyers, Kolawole Oluwadare and Kehinde Oyewumi, is asking the court to direct the two NASS leaders to perform their constitutional oversight functions to promptly probe the allegations missing N4.1bn fund.
The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) has called on the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration to call for a referendum for Biafra.
The pro-Biafra group stated this is only what can save the federal government from defeat both locally and internationally.
Recall that in an interview with Channels Television aired on Wednesday night, Buhari had asked IPOB’s leader, Nnamdi Kanu to defend himself in court for spreading false information about Nigeria when he was in the United Kingdom.
This is coming after a former Minister of Aviation, Mbazulike Amaechi led some Igbo leaders to visit the President for the unconditional release of the IPOB leader on November 19, 2021.
Buhari had during the visit told the delegation that he would not want to interfere in the running of the judiciary but said he would consider their ‘heavy’ demand.
But speaking to Channels Television, the president insisted that he would not interfere in any judicial process.
“One of the things I promised myself is never to interfere with the jobs of the judiciary. I have given him (Kanu) the opportunity to defend himself.
“Kanu has been insulting us. He has been given incorrect figures and comments against us. He needs to account for what he did,” the president said.
Reacting in a statement on Sunday, IPOB spokesperson, Emma Powerful asked the president to unconditionally release its leader.
He warned Buhari not be deceived by “the fake information about them” to avoid making mistakes that may affect Nigeria.
Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar will declare his intention to run in the 2023 presidential race before March 2022.
Naija News reports that an associate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftain made this known in an interview with Vanguard over the weekend.
The PDP member, who does not want his name published, said Atiku will declare interest to contest in the 2023 presidential election to Nigerians before the end of the first quarter of 2022.
He argued that the former vice president is the only candidate that can win a Presidential election for the opposition party, adding that Atiku is widely known nationally and internationally.
The Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Lucky Irabor, has stated that the security challenges rocking Nigeria will soon be a thing of the past.
Naija News reports that the CDS stated this on Sunday while speaking during a church service to mark this years’ Armed Forces Remembrance Day.
While admitting that Insecurity is still a challenge, Irabor claimed that the present level is better than what was obtained in the past.
According to him, the security threats facing the country would soon become history.
9. Gov. Wike Declares 19 Illegal Oil Refinery Kingpins Wanted
Governor Nyesom Wike on Sunday 19 people wanted for operating illegal crude oil refining sites believed to be responsible for the black soot polluting the environment in Rivers State.
The governor has also directed the Rivers State Head of Service to query Mr. Temple Amakiri, a Director in the State Ministry of Energy, for abetting bunkering activities and hand him over to the police for investigation and possible prosecution.
Wike, in a statewide broadcast on Sunday said the government is resolved to pragmatically tackle the soot pollution in the state by destroying and closing down all identified illegal crude oil refining sites and activities in the State.
The Governor stated that following his 2022 New Year Message outlining measures to tackle the black soot menace, the State Taskforce on Illegal Street Trading raided some illegal crude oil refining sites in Port Harcourt and arrested a number of recalcitrant persons.
He added that 19 kingpins of bunkering and illegal crude oil refining activities have also been identified.
The Nigerian Army has debunked a report claiming some soldiers in Katsina State killed some illegal miners over disagreement on money to be paid as bribe to them.
The Army also denied that there was any form of altercation between its troops and the illegal miners in Magama village on 5 January 2022.
The Director Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Onyema Nwachukwu who made the denial in a statement on Sunday added that the soldiers deployed to the North East are not involved in mining activities as their focus is to crush bandits, terrorists, and other criminals in the region.
He, therefore, urged members of the public to disregard the report as fake news which is capable of demoralizing the troops.
Naija News reports the statement by Nwachukwu comes as a reaction to publication by an online news medium which claimed that 2 soldiers and 7 illegal miners were killed during a gun duel, arising from a disagreement over gold nuggets in Magama village in Jibia LGA of Katsina State.
The platform claimed that the incident occurred when the soldiers turned down an initially agreed offer of 500,000 naira per pit from the miners, but afterwards, turned around to demand more money on discovering the large quantum of gold nuggets found by the illegal miners in one of the pits.