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Release, transfer El-Zakzaky to us for treatment, Iran govt urges Nigeria 

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Ibrahim Zakzaky

The Prosecutor-General (Attorney-General) of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Mohammed Montazeri, has appealed to the Federal Government of Nigeria and the judicial arm to release the leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, Shiekh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky, and transfer him to Iran for medical treatment.

According to AhlulBayt News Agency, an Iran-based news organisation, Montazeri said this in a letter on Saturday.

The Iranian official also called on the judiciary, which is the last hope of the common man, to grant bail to El-Zakzaky who is the leader of all Shi’ites in Nigeria.

Montazeri also criticised the Federal Government’s handling of the crisis, adding that El-Zakzakky’s current medical condition had become a source of worry.

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The letter read in part,

“I, as the prosecutor general of the Islamic Republic of Iran, urge the Nigerian judicial authorities (to take steps) in line with their judicial independence and support for a captive citizen, and provide the ground for his release and transfer him to the Islamic Republic of Iran for treatment.”

Sheikh El-Zakzaky, who is in his mid-sixties, lost his left eye when Nigerian government forces raided the northern town of Zaria more than three years ago.

The raid started after Shi’ites refused to allow the convoy of the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.Gen Tukur Buratai, to ply a road.

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His wife also sustained serious wounds while more than 300 of his followers and three of his sons were killed in the violence that ensued.

The cleric has been kept in custody along with his wife and a large number of his followers ever since.

El-Zakzky’s followers have for the last two years been holding protests mainly in Abuja, calling for his immediate release.

Iran, which is the stronghold of the Shi’a Muslim faith, has been demanding the release of El-Zakzaky for over three years despite reports that the Office of the National Security Adviser has asked for Iran to withdraw support for the Shi’ite leader.

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Back in 2016, Justice Gabriel Kolawole of a Federal High Court ordered his unconditional release from jail following a trial but the government has so far refused to set him free.

El-Zakzaky’s legal team has long called for his release, saying he is suffering from health issues that require urgent medical care abroad but the state high court in Kaduna has denied the request.

Another bail hearing is expected to take place on Monday, July 29.

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COVID-19: Enugu govt. decontaminates Ogbete Main Market

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The Enugu State Fire Service has commenced the decontamination and fumigation of Ogbete Main Market, Enugu, against the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Addressing newsmen during the exercise on Saturday, the state’s Chief Fire Officer, Mr. Okwudiri Ohaa, said that the exercise would last until Sunday.

It would be recalled that the state fire service carried out the first phase of the exercise in the market on April 1, shortly after the market was shut down by the state government to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the state.

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During the first phase of the decontamination of the market, the exercise was monitored by Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi and heads of security agencies in the state.

Ohaa said that the state government had been consistent with the exercise to ensure that “the fight against COVID-19 is won in Enugu State”.

He maintained that the decontamination would be a continuous one, saying that “when the market reopens, it will be a weekly event’’.

He advised residents to continue to adhere strictly to all precautionary measures for containment of COVID-19.

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Ohaa said the guidelines on personal hygiene protocol by World Health Organisation (WHO) and Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), among others, should be adhered to.

Reacting on behalf of the traders in the market, the Chief Security Officer, Mr. Justus Ezebinagu, commended Gov. Ugwuanyi for the initiative to decontaminate the market for the second time.

Ezebinagu gave an assurance that the traders would comply strictly with the government’s precautionary measures as well as the laid-down protocols by WHO and NCDC.

“When we were told that the governor directed the fire service to come and fumigate the market, the traders were happy because this is the second time they are coming to fumigate the market since this pandemic started.

“We thank our amiable governor for coming to our aid. We are happy.

“Even though the market is partially open for now, we believe that our governor is going to do more in our collective interest,’’ he said.

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Buhari‘s nephew, Ibrahim Dauda, dies in Daura

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Ibrahim Dauda, a nephew to the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), is dead.

Buhari, in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, said Dauda died on Saturday in Daura, Katsina State, following a prolonged illness.

In a condolence message, Buhari was quoted as saying the death had robbed the family and the Daura community of one of its finest gentlemen.

“I am deeply touched and devastated by the passing of yet another family member, a man who had demonstrated amazing kindness and honesty in all his dealings.

“The deceased is survived by a number of children, including Dauda Ibrahim, a Chief Administrative Officer in State House, Abuja,” the President said.

He prayed to God to forgive the soul of the deceased and reward his deeds.

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Four die in Ogun multiple accidents

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Four persons were confirmed dead, while six others sustained various degrees of injuries in three separate accidents that occurred at different locations in Ogun State on Friday.

This was contained in a statement issued by the Ogun State sector command of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) and made available to newsmen in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.

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The statement signed by Florence Okpe, FRSC Public Education Officer Ogun State Sector Command disclosed that a total of three road crashes were recorded on Friday in the state.

Okpe said, “the first crash occurred at about 10:30 in the morning along the Abeokuta – Sagamu route around Showo village.

“Two vehicles were involved with registration numbers AKM125AA, a MAZDA bus, and the second vehicle is with registration number KRD34CW a KIA bus “.

“A total of five persons were involved, all-male adult. Three persons sustained injuries but no death was recorded from the crash”.

“The suspected causes of the crash were tyre burst and excessive speed. The Injured were rescued to the Hospital”.

Okpe said, “the second crash occurred at about 1330HRS along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway around Arepo bus stop”.

” Three persons were involved, all male adults. Two persons sustained injuries, while one death was recorded from the crash”.

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