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FUOYE: Bisi Fayemi escapes as protesters attack convoy

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Bisi Fayemi

The protest embarked upon by students of the Federal University, Oye-Ekiti, turned violent on Tuesday evening leaving in its trails vandalisation of properties.

Wife of the Governor of Ekiti State, Mrs. Bisi Fayemi, who was on tour of council areas in the state, escaped being attacked by the protesters as they smashed all the vehicles in her convoy.

Sources at Oye Ekiti alleged that no fewer than two persons were feared killed in the course of the protest.

The students, who got a hint of the presence of the governor’s wife, who had been to two other council areas earlier, mobilized for the action.

Sources said the governor’s wife was “whisked away from the scene in a commando-like manner,” while others in her convoy scampered to safety.

However, some people including journalists in the First Lady’s convoy were injured in the attack.

The convoy armed with sticks and stones, were attacking unsuspecting commuters and commuters when the convoy of the governor’s wife arrived as they hurled stones at the vehicles.

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Sources alleged that the protesters, which comprised students, hoodlums and commercial bike operators, torched a police van and as well seized two rifles from policemen.

According to sources, hoodlums and commercial bike operators had joined the students in the protest over poor power situation in the two campuses of the university and the host communities.

Reacting, the Police Public Relations Officer, Ekiti Command, Mr Caleb Ikechukwu, who confirmed the attack on the governor’s wife, however, debunked reports that two persons were allegedly killed in the protest.

Ikechukwu said,

“Nobody was killed. There was no loss of live. The students protested in the morning and blocked the Ifaki-Ikole-Omuo highway and prevented free flow of vehicles. The students did not allow vehicles to move freely and they vandalised the property of BEDC.

“When police went there to dialogue with them, they resisted them. And the wife of the governor who went on local government tour ran into the barricade mounted on the road.

“The students were reported to have been violent destroying cars and smashed the windscreens of vehicles. We want to warn that the command won’t tolerate hooliganism under any guise. We want to assure the public that the police are on top of the situation and our people must go about their normal businesses,” the police spokesman said.

The students’ protest, which started as early as 6.30am, came on the heels of an earlier one four months ago over the same cause, with the placards carrying student massed at the gates of their campuses to prevent entry and as well disrupted smooth flow of traffic on the federal highway leading to Ilupeju, Ikole and Kogi and Abuja axis.

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President of the Students’ Union Government, Oluwaseun Awodola, while addressing the students, had lamented poor power supply, which he said had heightened insecurity of lives and property on the two campuses and host communities.

Awodola said,

“The generality of Oye Ekiti is suffering from poor power supply. It came to our notice that our students are being molested in the night, our students are being beaten in the night, and our students are being gang robbed in the night because we don’t have light.

“Everywhere in FUOYE is dark. Our students keep charging at petrol filling station. This is risky. We don’t want mass death in FUOYE. What we want is a stable power supply,” he said.

Other leaders, who took turns to address the gatherings, said students’ environment needed stable power supply for them to read and have unhindered access to internet.

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FUOYE Public Relations Officer, Mr Godfrey Bakji, who said the university was not in control of power, described the protest as senseless, as he appealed to the students not to disrupt academic activities.

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#RevolutionNow: DSS asks Osun protesters to provide parents before release

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The Department of State Security [DSS] asked four of the arrested #RevolutionNow Movement protesters to provide their parents before they could be released, their lawyer has said.

WuzupNigeria reports that three out of seven protesters arrested on Wednesday in Osogbo were released to their parents on Thursday.

Their counsel, Alfred Adegoke, told our correspondent that four of the protesters were still being detained at the DSS office in Osogbo.

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Adegoke gave the names of those released as Samuel Olowolafe, Gift Erupke, and Martins Jesuloni.

According to him, the four that are still held were unable to bring their parents as demanded by the DSS.

He said,

“They are still being held. The condition that they should produce their parents is uncalled for.

“They are adults. For instance, Olawale Bakare lost his mum long ago. Also, parents of one of those being held live abroad.”

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Covid-19: FG approves gradual reopening of international flights

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The Presidential Task Force (PTF), on COVID-19, has approved the gradual reopening of international flights and train services across the country.

Newsmen report that this was part of the decisions reached at the end of the second extension of the second phase of eased lockdown.

Mr Boss Mustapha, the Chairman of PTF and Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), said this while speaking at the daily briefing of the PTF on Thursday in Abuja.

He said,

“It’s important to ensure that restrictions are not completely relaxed in order to control transmission.

“It is also important that at this Community Transmission Phase of the pandemic sub-national governments step up to take more responsibilities by owning the response.

“To sustain gains already made, therefore, the PTF recommended to the President the retention of the current phase of the response with minor changes to address economic, socio-political and health concerns.

“It is, however, important to inform you that the major changes being proposed are aimed at achieving the following:

“Gradual re-opening of international air flights within established parameters;

“Re-opening of rail transportation within established parameters”.

Mustapha also granted permission to exit classes to resume ahead of examinations and allowing civil servants from Grade Level 12 to resume work, and also the opening of recreational parks for supervised exercises.

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Also speaking, the Coordinator of PTF, Dr Sani Aliyu, said the PTF had communicated to the aviation ministry to begin processes of reopening international flights.

Aliyu also noted that one of the new requirements would be to ensure that international passengers arrived three hours before departure to ensure proper checks before takeoff.

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He further stated that if all requirements from the aviation sector were made the resumption of international flights would be a matter of weeks and not months.

Answering a question from the media, the Minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, explained that the aviation sector was ready to open any moment.

Sirika also explained that international flights would open as soon as it was safe to operate as all efforts were being put in place to ensure the reopening in weeks and not in months.

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Covid-19: Yobe announces reopening of schools

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Yobe State government has announced August 8, 2020, as the date for the reopening of schools across the state.

The new date applies to all boarding schools in the state while academic activities will commence in all schools on August 11, 2020.

The State Commissioner for Basic and Secondary Education, Dr. Mohammed Sani Idris announced this in Damaturu Thursday while briefing journalists on the preparedness of the state to reopen schools after their closure about four months ago due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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He said:

“Yobe State Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education wishes to inform the general public that SS3 and boarding Junior Secondary School students should unfailingly resume on 8th August, 2020.

“While Private schools and Government Day Secondary Schools (GDSS) students should resume on 11th August, 2020.

“The Ministry equally advises all students to come with their facemasks, as school authorities will also provide all preventable measures against the pandemic.”

The Commissioner also noted that

“Gov. Mai Mala Buni has assured that Yobe state will always abide by all preventable guidelines provided by the federal government.

He urged all SS3 students to prepare themselves well for the WAEC which will commence August 17, 2020 in order to get the best results and make the state proud.

“We are determined to reverse the negative educational statistics associated with our state. We therefore call on the students to read hard and make the state proud,” Dr. Sani said.

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