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Akpabio tried to harass me sexually, says ex-NDDC MD

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Former acting managing director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Joy Nunieh says she slappped Godswill Akpabio, minister of Niger Delta affairs, for sexually harassing her.

Speaking on Monday, during an interview on Arise TV, Nunieh said the incident happened at the minister’s guest house in Abuja.

She said her reaction to the alleged harassment proved her intolerance for “nonsense” as a woman from Rivers state.

“Why did he not tell Nigerians that I slapped him in his guest house at Apo? I am the only woman that slapped Akpabio. He thought he could come up on me. He tried to harass me sexually,” she said.

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“I slapped him. He tried to come on me. I am an Ogoni woman and nobody jokes with us. I showed Akpabio that Rivers women do not tolerate nonsense.”

The former NDDC MD also accused Akpabio of trying to inflate the NDDC budget.

She said the minister directed her to include some projects from the refugee commission in the budget of the NDDC.

“Akpabio wrote me to put a list of projects from the refugee commission in the budget of NDDC. Refugee commission is another federal government commission for IDPs,” she said.

“How do you tell me to put some of their projects in the NDDC budget when we have so many things to do in the Niger Delta? How do you explain that?”

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Nunieh and Akpabio have made allegations against each other following the activities of the senate ad hoc panel investigating the alleged mismanagement of N40 billion by the interim management committee (IMC) of the NDDC.

Akpabio had told the panel that he knew nothing about the expenditure of the NDDC under Nunieh because she refused to give him briefings.

But Nunieh alleged that the minister engineered her removal for failing to follow his orders.

“When we first came to the NDDC, on the day of going for the inauguration, he told me in the car that Madam MD, If you don’t do what I say, the same pen which I use to sign your letter, it will be the same pen I will use to remove you,” she had said.

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Nunieh had also alleged that Akpabio asked her to change the dollars in the NDDC account; sack the head of the legal team who is from the north; remove all directors who refused to follow his instructions and also to implicate Peter Nwaoboshi, chairman of the senate committee on NDDC.

 

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JUST IN: Buruji Kashamu dies of COVID-19

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A former Senator representing Ogun East, Senator Buruji Kashamu, is dead after suffering from COVID-19 complications, Senator Murray Bruce has disclosed

Ben Murray-Bruce who broke the news on Twitter on Saturday said Kashamu died at First Cardiologist Consultants in Lagos.

Kashamu represented Ogun east in the eighth senate.

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He had a brush with the law over allegations of drug dealing while he was in the US.

In 2015, there was a stand-off at his residence after operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) attempted to arrest him for extradition to the US.

He challenged the attempt to extradite until his death.

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He was 62 years old.

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Governor Bala defends appointment of SA on unmarried women

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Governor Mohammed Bala of Bauchi State has defended the appointment of Balaraba Ibrahim as a Special Assistant on unmarried women affairs.

Earlier, in a letter dated August 4, 2020, with reference number GO/SS/POL/S/83, the governor approved the appointment. Meanwhile, the new appointment caused a controversy in the media.

However, in a statement released by his senior special assistant on media Mukhtar Gidado on Saturday, Governor Bala said he appointed a special assistant on unmarried women affairs to address the needs of widows and divorcees in the state.

The Bauchi State Governor who noted that the widows and divorcees constitute a significant segment of the state’s population, said the unending petitions by representatives of this group led to the appointment.

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The statement read;

“The governor decided to establish a channel of communication whereby their plight can be addressed like those of other groups in the state.

“After due consideration and in keeping with his campaign pledge not to leave anybody behind, the governor graciously acceded to their request hence the appointment of a special assistant on women affairs, with the specific responsibility of handling matters related to widows and divorcees, not “unmarried” women.

“Unfortunately, while producing it, the word “unmarried” was inadvertently introduced into the letter. This is a clear mistake of the head; not of the heart which the Government sincerely regrets.

“Governor Bala Mohammed is sincerely pained that this error could have caused the women of Bauchi state and elsewhere, considerable distress and embarrassment.

“He has therefore directed that his personal apologies be conveyed to all women of Bauchi State, particularly the widows and divorcees whose interests he has vowed to protect and advance, always.

“Finally, governor Bala Mohammed enjoins the good people of Bauchi state to put this matter behind us so that, together, we can sustain the achievements that have been recorded, so far, in diverse areas such as youth empowerment, infrastructural development, rehabilitation of schools and primary healthcare centres, amelioration of the plight of senior citizens and retirees and the harmonious relationship between the executive and the legislature.”

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Nigerian students give DSS till Monday to free #RevolutionNow protesters, threaten mass action

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The Association of Nigerian Students, South-West zone, has given the Department of State Services till Monday to release detained #RevolutionNow protesters.

The group, in a statement on Saturday, vowed to commence a massive protest if the demand was not met.

The statement was signed by the NANS Zone D Coordinator, Kowe Amos; Secretary-General, Giwa Temitope; and Public Relations Officer, Kazeem Israel.

The students condemned the arrest and brutalisation of the peaceful protesters in Osun, Lagos, Ogun, Abuja and demanded their release.

“We find it disturbing that despite the fact that several international protocols guarantee human rights to protest, successive governments in Nigeria have not done enough in the aspect of respect for these rights.

“In Nigeria, dissent is criminalised. The ruling class aim to assume the position of the all-mighty; they do not want to be questioned.

“Meanwhile, in an unjust society, silence is a crime, rebellion to tyrants and tyrannical tendencies is obedience to God. It cannot be gainsaid that the rot in this country has gone beyond silence. It is expected of us all as patriotic persons to be rebellious considering the rate at which our leaders direct our affairs as a people,” NANS said.

According to the student body, the manner the affairs of the country is being managed is heart-wrenching.

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It noted that the establishment had mobilised everything within its capacity to ensure that the people were gagged.

“The association haven studied the demands of the protesters make bold to assert that they are legitimate, many of which we have also in our capacity as an association raised in a series of interventions since we came on board last year.

“Nigerians, especially in the North, are being killed like games by rising insurgency. Rate of poverty, hopelessness and unemployment is alarming. Education and health have been completely abandoned.

“Corruption has taken over the entire administration, with rising foreign debt profile capable of compromising the nation’s sovereignty. Respect for democratic ideals of freedom, human dignity, rights and rule of law has been thrown to the winds. The country has been subjected to the whims of jackboot absolutism.

“These are legitimate issues raised by the #RevolutionNow protesters. But, the posture of the Nigerian government towards issues has shown that they would rather empower/embrace sycophancy than agree with those with dissent because they are not ready to be held accountable which is why there is always a clampdown on protests,” NANS added.

The group also lamented the increase in the pump price of fuel and the absence of palliatives due to the COVID-19 pandemic, wondering where the billions of donations and the recovered Abacha loot went to.

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It called for 50 per cent slash in school fees and upgrade of educational facilities.

NANS described the character of the government as inhumane and greedy.

“It is to these end that we demand that the government unconditionally frees the detained protesters.

“We warn that the leadership of the zone would be forced to mobilise students down to the barricades should the government fail to release the protesters at the latest Monday,” the statement said.

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