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Troops kill two female suicide bombers in Borno

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Bayelsa pandemonium Soldiers Taraba

Two female suicide bombers that attempted to infiltrate the Defence Company of 26 Task Force Brigade Garrison were killed before they could detonate their suicide vests.

The troops averted what could have been a deadly attack in Gwoza, Gwoza Council Area of Borno State.

Nigerian Army Operations Media Coordinator, Colonel Aminu Iliyasu, in a statement, disclosed that the suicide bombers were detected by “eagle-eyed” soldiers on sentry duty.

Iliyasu also informed that troops also rescued twelve women and four children held captive by the insurgents.

“In what has now become a recurring decimal for the Boko Haram criminal elements across Operation LAFIYA DOLE Theatre, owing to the growing effectiveness of the Nigerian Army Super Camp Concept, some criminal Boko Haram elements mounted on five Gun Trucks and motorcycles attempted to infiltrate 112 Task Force Battalion troops’ location at Mafa in Mafa LGA of Borno State on 1 December 2019. In a shameless display of poor training and tactics, the marauding criminals made themselves easy target, as they fell prey to the superior firepower power of the resilient and highly professional troops of the said Battalion,” he said in the statement.

“At the end of the encounter which lasted for about 40 minutes, the criminals once again suffered heavy casualties in both men and equipment as they were seen retreating in disarray with some of their dead and wounded. However, the dogged troops of the Unit embarked on hot pursuit of the scampering insurgents and exploited their withdrawal route”.

The statement added,

“During the exploitation, troops recovered three Boko Haram bodies ( 2 of them strapped with suicide vests). Additionally, one Boko Haram criminals’ Gun Truck, one motorcycle, one Anti-Aircraft Gun, one PKT Gun, one Rocket Propelled Gun Tube were captured by the troops. Other items that were equally captured by the troops include 2 Rocket Propelled Gun bombs, 2 AK 47 Rifles, 25 Rounds of Anti-Aircraft Gun, 723 Rounds of 7.62mm Special ammunition, 51 Rounds of 7.62mm NATO ammunition, 52 Rounds of 7.62 X 54mmR (PKT) ammunition, surgical kits, Boko Haram terrorist uniforms and warm clothing were also captured by the gallant troops.

“In a similar development, 2 female suicide bombers attempted to infiltrate the Defence Company of 26 Task Force Brigade Garrison location at Gwoza in Gwoza LGA of Borno State on 1 December 2019. Consequently, the eagle eyed soldiers deployed on sentry duty identified the criminal intruders and neutralized them before they could detonate their suicide vests.

“In yet another development, based on credible intelligence, troops of 21 Special Armoured Brigade in conjunction with elements of the Civilian Joint Task Force conducted a robust Clearance Operation to suspected Boko Haram enclaves at Zua and Kotembe Villages in Bama LGA of Borno State in the early hours of 2 December 2019. Incidentally, the cowardly remnant Boko Haram criminals hibernating in the general area opened fire on the advancing troops from an ineffective range and fled in disarray towards Kerawa along the Nigeria- Cameroon boarder. Nevertheless, the gallant troops continued with their advance and bravely searched the area. It is gratifying to note that, 12 women and 4 children held captives by the insurgents were rescued and evacuated to safety.

“Elsewhere, other ongoing Nigerian Army Operations and Exercises conducted across the country continue to yield positive results as our gallant troops continue to decimate the criminal gangs and deny them freedom of action.
Relatedly, troops of 9 Brigade Garrison on Exercise CROCODILE SMILE IV, while acting on credible intelligence from some law-abiding citizens, conducted a successful Cordon and Search Operation in a resident of one notorious drug peddler in Ipaja area of Lagos State. During the Operation, troops busted and discovered a large underground makeshift bunker used for the storage of large quantities of different kinds of illicit drugs”.

“In a related development, troops of 146 Battalion on Exercise CROCODILE SMILE IV also neutralized one bandit while others are believed to have escaped with various degrees of gunshot wounds during an encounter at Lafarge Company general area in Akamkpa LGA of Cross Rivers State. Also, troops of 16 Brigade Garrison on Exercise CROCODILE SMILE IV arrested one armed robbery suspect and recovered one locally fabricated pistol at Tombia Roundabout in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State.

“Similarly, on 1 December 2019, acting on credible information, troops of 343 Artillery Regiment, Quick Response Force on Operation CROCODILE SMILE IV raided a cultists’ staging area along Ahoada Road, Elele in Ikwerre LGA of Rivers State. After a brief gun battle, the criminals retreated into the nearby forest. However, the troops neutralized 2 of the cultists and recovered one AK 47 Rifle, one locally made pistol and 30 Rounds of 7.62mm Special ammunition”.

 

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Amazon launches online pharmacy in India

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Global e-commerce giant Amazon has rolled out an online pharmacy service in India on Friday.

The service beginning with information technology hub Bengaluru as part of its efforts to ramp up operations in a country it sees as a major emerging market.

Customers in Bengaluru would be able to order prescription-based drugs in addition to over-the-counter medicines, basic health devices, and Ayurveda or traditional medicine products from certified sellers, a spokesman for Amazon India said.

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“This is particularly relevant in present times as it will help customers meet their essential needs while staying safe at home,’’ the spokesman said, referring to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The pandemic, which is still spreading at a rapid pace in India, saw a nationwide lockdown for weeks beginning at the end of March. Lockdowns currently continue in highly affected areas.

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The lockdown and social distancing norms have seen a jump in online sales by e-pharmacies with several online pharmacies reporting growth in sales, according to business news portal moneycontrol.com.

Even before the pandemic, sector analysts forecast rapid growth for e-pharmaceutical players, with growing internet connectivity and the use of smartphones.

E-pharmacies were expected to attain a combined market size of 2.7 billion dollars in India in 2023 from about 360 million dollars in 2019, according to a report by global consultancy EY.

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During a visit to India in January, Amazon Chief Executive Jeff Bezos said his company would invest one billion dollars in India over the next five years.

“I predict the 21st century is going to be the Indian century,’’ Bezos said at a company event in New Delhi.

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Falana kicks against N5m NBC fine, says act is illegal

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Femi Falana,  Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), has described the N5m fine on Lagos-based radio station, Nigeria Info 99.3 FM by the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) as illegal.

The Human Rights Lawyer said this in a statement he personally signed and wondered why the NBC will be in a hurry to penalise the radio station

While noting that the State Security Service (SSS) has not concluded an investigation into the radio station’s guest, Dr Mailafia Obadiah, Falana asked why the Commission was in a hurry to violate the broadcast firm’s fundamental right.

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According to him, it is only a competent court of law that has the right to impose fines on a criminal suspect after conducting a trial.

“Only a competent court of law is empowered to try, convict and impose a fine on a criminal suspect after a trial has been conducted before a competent court.

“In view of the fact that the imposition of the N5 million fine was anchored on a purported amendment of the Code and since the NBC lacks the legal competence to impose a fine on any broadcasting station without a finding of guilt by a properly constituted criminal court the NBC should suo mutu quash the illegal fine,” Falana said.

The senior lawyer added that:

“Section 33 (4) of the Constitution provides that anyone charged with a criminal offence shall be tried before a competent court or tribunal.”

He noted that in the case between the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) and Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited at the Federal High Court, Honourable Justice Ojukwu held that the imposition of fines by regulatory agencies was unlawful.

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The NBC had said the fine was imposed on the media outfit due to its unprofessional broadcast.

It explained that Nigeria Info was not professional in the handling of its morning show aired between 8.30 am and 9.00 am on Monday.

NBC stated that the station provided its platform for its guest and a former deputy governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Dr Mailafia Obadiah, to promote “unverifiable and inciting views,” saying such could lead to public disorder.

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Two dead in Imo petrol tanker explosion

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Tragedy struck on Owerri-Onitsha Road in Imo State on Friday as a petrol-laden tanker exploded and killed two persons.

The incident, which happened at the Irete area by Forte Oil Filling Station, caused panic in the area.

The cause of the explosion was yet to be ascertained but newsmen, who visited the scene on Friday afternoon, learned that the driver of the tanker and a woman, said to be coming back from a nearby market, died in the explosion while many others were injured.

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An eye witness, Kingsley Eke, told newsmen that for the timely intervention of the men of the state fire service, the explosion would have wrecked more havoc.

He said, “The incident would have been more disastrous but for the prompt arrival of firefighters. It is unfortunate that we lost two persons in the fire – the driver and a woman. Others have been rushed to a hospital.”

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When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Orlando Ikeokwu, confirmed the incident.

Ikeokwu, however, said he could only confirm one death as of the time of filing this report.

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