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Shiites mark 68th birthday of El-Zakyzaky, warn FG against provocation

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Members of the Islamic Movement Of Nigeria (IMN) popularly known as Shiites have handed down a warning to the Nigerian Government not to provoke them on their demand for the release of their spiritual leader, Sheik Ibraheem El-Zakyzaky.

The group said it would change its style of protest if the government continues to keep him in detention for the next four years.

This was disclosed in Abuja on Tuesday during a mass protest to mark the 68th birthday anniversary of El-Zakyzaky and 1224 days of his detention.

Speaking on behalf of the group Shaikh Sidi Munnir from Sokoto state who is also a member of the movement said that the movement would change its style and move to another step if the government fail to release their leader.

“I am sure we will not be doing this kind of procession to call for the release of our leader we will move to another step. That is if they push us to the wall, that means if they hold our leader and refuse to release him, the style will change. We will not only be protesting to call for the release of our leader. The story will change,” Munnir stated.

Munnir, who also called on President Muhammadu Buhari to rescind his decision and release him from the detention called on well-meaning Nigerians and the International community to intervene and prevail on the government to obey court order.

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The Secretary of the Academic Forum of the movement, Abdullahi Isa said that refusal of the government to release El-Zakyzaky has further increased the popularity of their leader and the movement.

He noted that the movement has achieved a lot with the protest by exposing the injustice being perpetrated by the government and create awareness on the extrajudicial killings of their members by the security operatives.

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He added that the continuous violation of rule law by the President has tossed the movement to reckoning within and outside the country, adding that the movement would not give up on its demand.

“He has violated all the laws of the land including an order by the court of competent law which is the federal high court that ordered for the freedom of our leader.”

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Foundation donates N13m worth scholarship to 26 first class graduates

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An NGO, Igala Education Foundation (IEF), has donated N13 million to 26 First Class graduates of Igala extraction from various higher institutions across Nigeria.

Speaking at the Cheques’ presentation ceremony on Tuesday in Lokoja, the Kogi Deputy Governor, Chief Edward Onoja, congratulated the awardees for being lucky to be recognized for the gesture.

Onoja, who influenced the donation in collaboration with his friends and associates, said the donation would go a long way to support the graduating awardees.

He extolled the founder of the foundation, late Prof. Francis Idachaba, for initiating the scholarship program in the year 2000, saying it was the right choice that had been yielding tangible results since then.

”In life, you need to sow the seed to reap the harvest that generations will benefit from.

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“I urge us all to continue to sow good seed because nature has a way of paying us back; there is power in seed sowing,” Onoja said.

The deputy governor, who is also a member, Board of Trustees (BoT) of the foundation, commended the awardees for their commitment to having graduated with First class, saying it was not easy.

”When you see such people with First Class Degree, we need to encourage them so that others coming behind can also be encouraged to try their best.

”I want to believe that some of you will be global players in your different fields. I encourage you to pursue your dreams,” he advised.

Onoja urged the awardees not look at the amount, but to utilize it wisely and make the foundation and people of Igala Kingdom proud.

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He promised, on behalf of all the donors, to continue to improve on the scholarship so that more people would benefit and build a good legacy.

”Congratulations once again on behalf of his Excellency, Gov. Yahaya Bello, who is also a donor.

“The exercise is a proof of unity across the different tribes of Kogi,” Onoja said.

Earlier, the Executive Director of the foundation, Prof. Joseph Omada, said that the group had over the years been given scholarships to best students at basic, secondary, and tertiary levels.

Omada said the scholarship, which used to be N70, 000 per awardee, was raised to N500, 000 by the deputy governor during the Igala Education Summit held in 2019.

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He, therefore, commended the deputy governor for fulfilling his promise and for influencing other donors to ensure that the needed fund was raised for the scholarship.

”This is not politics; it is encouraging the students of Igala to be serious with their academics and come out with good grades,” he said.

Also, Mr. Wemi Jones, the Commissioner for Education, Science, and Technology, lauded the foundation for the gesture, saying it worth emulation.

Jones urged the awardees to utilize the opportunity and be a good ambassador of the Igala Kingdom and the state at large.

Speaking on behalf of the awardees, Mr. Dominic Iko-Ojo, thanked the foundation, the deputy governor, and all other donors for encouraging and motivating them through the scholarship.

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Banditry: Gov. Matawalle advocates N/West security committee

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Gov. Bello Matawalle of Zamfara on Tuesday advocated for a NorthWest Security and Peace Committee to address the security challenges of the region.
Matawalle made the call in Gusau while presenting 200 new operational vehicles to various security agencies in the state.
“I recently wrote to Mr President to offer our suggestion on the need to form a North West Security and Peace Committee to effectively handle the intractable security challenges bedevilling the sub-region over the years,” he said.
The governor said the need for the regional security committee was informed by his state experience within the last one year of peacebuilding through dialogue and reconciliation.
“The need for the committee is underscored by the fact that the Northwestern states of Sokoto, Kebbi, Zamfara, Katsina as well as  Kaduna and Niger in the North-central share common borders and have forested areas sprawling across these borders.
“This allows for free interstate movements of bandits and causing damage to people’s lives and properties.
“The setbacks suffered by our peace process, which was gaining traction, is partly a result of this interstate movement of bandits.
“It is only through a united approach by all the affected states that we can effectively root out banditry in the subregion,” Matawalle said.
The governor announced plans to organize a joint security collaboration with the neighboring states of Kaduna, Kebbi, Sokoto, Niger, and Katsina in order to block the existing porous borders so as to impede infiltration of miscreants or armed bandits into the state.
The Newsmen reports that the 200 new vehicles fully fitted with communication gadgets were presented to the Lt-Gen. Tukur Burutai, the Chief of Army Staff (COAD).
Burutai was represented by the General Officer Commanding (GOC) 3 Division of the Nigerian Army, Jos, Maj.-Gen. Nuhu Angbazo.
The COAS thanked the governor for providing the vehicles, saying they will facilitate the fight against crime in the state.
NAN also reports that the vehicles would be distributed to the Nigeria Police, Army, Air Force, Civil Defence Corps, Nigeria Immigration Service, Nigeria Correctional Service.
Others include the Federal Road Safety Corps, the Joint Task Force of Operation Hadarin Daji, Hisbah Commission, Zamfara Road Traffic Agency (ZAROTA) and EFCC Sokoto Zone.
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Aderinto joins race for 13th UI vice chancellorship

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Prof. Adeyinka Aderinto, the immediate past Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), University of Ibadan, has formally joined the race for the 13th Vice Chancellorship slot of Nigeria’s premier university.

Aderinto, currently Head, Department of Sociology, disclosed this on Tuesday in Ibadan.

Newsmen reports that Aderinto is perceived as a strong contender to the position set to be vacated by incumbent Vice-Chancellor, Prof Idowu Olayinka, towards the end of the year.

Aderinto broke the news of his intention on the Faculty of the Social Sciences Whatsapp platform immediately after submitting his application.

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He also used the opportunity to solicit their support and prayers to enable him to actualise his dream.

“Dear Colleagues, I wish to inform you that I have just submitted my application for the position of the VC of our University.

“I seek your support in prayers. God bless you,” he said.

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Newsmen reports that though there was no academic work in the university due to the ongoing strike, political meetings and mobilization had kicked off informally.

Aderinto informed that he had started to receive wide support in the university with many praying for a successful outing.

Aderinto, the best graduating student for his set, had served the university in several capacities such as Examinations Officer, Sub-dean, Dean Postgraduate School, and Director of Special Duties in the office of the Vice-Chancellor.

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He had also been acting Head of Sociology at the Lagos State University (LASU).

Newsmen investigation revealed no fewer than seven other aspirants, including Former Dean, Faculty of Arts, Prof Remi Raji, incumbent Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Administration), Prof. Kayode Adebowale, Provost, College of Medicine, Prof. Bunmi Olaopa, and Former Chief Medical Director, UCH, Prof. Temitope Alonge, among others.

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