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HEDA Asks FG to Sanction Those Who Conspired With Abacha

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The Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA), a civil society group, has asked the federal government to identify and sanction those who assisted Sani Abacha, former head of state, in “looting the nation’s treasury”.

The group said the federal government has the moral obligation to explain to Nigerians questions surrounding illicit funds traced to Abacha.

Recently, the British crown dependency of Jersey seized £211 million said to have been laundered from Nigeria by the late head of state.

In a statement by Olanrewaju Suraju, chairman of HEDA, the group commended President Muhammadu Buhari for taking a “drastic step to recover the funds as against the culture of appeasement by previous administrations that signed various retrogressive agreements with interests holding the funds”.

HEDA said the federal government needs a comprehensive roadmap on Abacha Loot, which should include identifying the collaborators, the banks and other financial institutions involved.

The group asked the federal government to institute an extensive probe into the era of military rule with the goal of what it called “total recovery” to ensure that “criminals will have their judgment day irrespective of time and space”.

“These funds were kept by some banks for 20 years. The FG should invoke international instruments to sanction international collaborators who assisted in fleecing the country,” the group said.

“A crooked leader is expected to be surrounded by a retinue of corrupt aides. With the looting of billions of dollars by Abacha, it should be expected that the five-year rule represented an era of the locust when public funds were plundered in the most reckless and irresponsible manner.

“Recovering the looted funds of late Abacha should be commended, but there are still many rivers to cross.

“Many loose ends are yet to be tied. These funds passed through the banking system, they were not shipped abroad; the funds were withdrawn from the Nigerian financial system definitely with the collaboration of some officials.

“These are grave questions that Nigerians should ask.”

The group said a comprehensive probe into the past will strengthen public confidence that “criminals of yesteryears will not be allowed to live with the impression that you can live in peace at the expense of misery and extreme poverty their acts of corruption had nurtured”.

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’34 Killed’, Houses Burnt in Zamfara

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At least 34 people were killed after suspected bandits attacked three villages in Shinkafi local government of Zamfara state on Friday.

The affected villages are Gidan Wawo-Katuru, Tungar Kaho-Galadi and Kyalido-Katuru.

The attackers, who came on motorcycles, set many houses on fire and shot at those within their sight.

Mohammed Shehu, police public relations officer (PPRO) in Zamfara, confirmed the attack but said normalcy had been restored in the villages.

“In order to forestall future occurrence in any part of the state, the Zamfara State Police Command in collaboration with other security agencies have made adequate security arrangement to ensure adequate protection of all villages and communities in the state,” he said in a statement.

“15th June 2019, the Commissioner of Police Zamfara State Command, CP Usman Nagogo, joined the delegation led by the deputy governor to the affected villages for the burial of the deceased.

“The CP has directed the combine security personnel deployed to the area to improve and sustain the ongoing bush combing of the affected area and its environs for possible arrest of the perpetrators of this dastardly act.”

Efforts of the government to contain attacks in Zamfara have not yielded the desired result.

Two months ago, the federal government banned mining, citing it as a major cause of banditry but several attacks have been recorded after that action.

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Gorilla Allegedly Swallows N6.8m in Kano Zoo

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Emerging reports have claimed that about N6.8 million has been swallowed by gorilla in the Kano Zoological Gardens.

According to BBC Pidgin, finance officer in the zoo was quoted as saying the gorilla “sneaked into their office” and carted away the money before swallowing it. Umar Kobo, the managing director of the zoo, confirmed that the money is missing and that the issue is being investigated.

Abdullahi Haruna, police spokesman in Kano, was quoted to have confirmed confirmed that 10 persons, including those on duty when the money went missing, have been arrested.

According to him, “The issue is under investigations for now and I don’t want to say anything on the matter, many journalists have come to meet me but I don’t want to talk anything. What I can confirm is that money is missing.

“Yes, it is true that money from five days of Sallah festivities is missing from the Kano zoo. As at now, we have arrested 10 members of staff of the zoo including the security man and those working in the finance unit.”

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Gunmen Abduct Taraba NLC Chairman’s Wife, One Other

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Gunmen in the early hours of Thursday kidnapped the wife of the State Chairman of the Nigerian Labour Congress, Mrs Abigail Gambo.

Police Public Relations Officer in Taraba state DSP David Misal who confirmed the report said the wife of Taraba State Chairman of Nigeria Labour Congress, Mr Peter Gambo and Mr Emeka Okoronkwo, the Chief Executive Officer of Our Nation Bread company were abducted from their houses at Magami area of Jalingo around 1:00 a.m on Thursday.

“It is confirmed that two people were kidnapped and one injured by unknown gunmen in the early hours of Thursday in Jalingo,” he said.

NLC Chairman, Gambo also confirmed the incident.

Gambo said, “They whisked my wife away to an unknown destination after shooting sporadically in the compound.

“I have made a written submission to the police on the incident. ”

He added that the abductors were yet to contact him or any family member for ransom.

Gambo also said Mr. Okoronkwo, the owner of ‘Our Nations Bread Bakery’, who is his neighbour was also kidnapped.

Our correspondent gathered that the kidnappers shot the gateman of Mr Okoronkwo in the leg during the operation which lasted over 40 minutes.

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