Tag Archives: Nigeria News

At least 30 people killed in triple suicide bombings in Nigeria’s Borno state

Over 30 people were killed in a triple suicide bombing in northeastern Nigeria, emergency services reported on Monday, in an attack bearing the hallmarks of the Boko Haram jihadist group.

Three bombers detonated their explosives late Sunday outside a hall in the town of Konduga, where soccer fans were watching a game on television. Konduga is about 22 miles southeast of Maiduguri, the capital of Borno State.

Usman Kachalla, the head of operations for the Nigerian emergency management agency, said on Monday: “The death toll from the attack has so far increased to 30. We have over 40 people injured.”

Ali Hassan, the leader of a self-defense group in Konduga, said that the attack happened at around 9 p.m. on Sunday and that the operator of the hall had prevented one of the bombers from entering the packed venue.

“There was a heated argument between the operator and the bomber who blew himself up,” Mr. Hassan said by telephone, adding that two other bombers who had mingled among the crowd at a tea stall nearby had then also detonated their vests.

“Nine people died on the spot, including the operator, and 48 were injured,” Mr. Hassan said.

Mr. Kachala of the emergency management agency said that the high number of fatalities was because responders had been unable to reach the site of the blast quickly and were ill equipped to deal with large numbers of wounded.

“Lack of an appropriate health facility to handle such a huge emergency situation and the delay in obtaining security clearance to enable us deploy from Maiduguri in good time led to the high death toll,” he said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility, but the attack bore the imprint of Boko Haram, which has led a decade-long campaign to establish a hard-line Islamist state in northeastern Nigeria.

The last suicide attack was in April, when two bombers blew themselves up outside the garrison town of Monguno, killing a soldier and a vigilante and wounding another soldier.

Konduga has been repeatedly targeted by suicide bombers from a Boko Haram faction loyal to its longtime leader, Abubakar Shekau. The faction typically carries out suicide attacks against civilian targets such as mosques, markets and bus stations, often using young women and girls as bombers.

The jihadists are believed to sneak into Konduga from hiding places in the nearby Sambisa Forest.

The Boko Haram insurgency has so far claimed 27,000 lives and forced around two million people to flee their homes. The violence has spilled into neighboring Niger, Chad and Cameroon, prompting the formation of a regional military coalition to battle the insurgents.

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Yomi Shogunle sacked over too many ‘Public complaints’

The Nigeria Police have sacked the head of its public complaints unit, a senior official said Saturday.

Yomi Shogunle.
Yomi Shogunle. Photo: BBC

Yomi Shogunle, a controversial officer who at times rattled social media users with his posts, was removed from the Police Complaints Response Unit and posted to Ebonyi State.

The assistant commissioner of police was transferred on Friday morning to head the police area command in Nkalagu, Ebonyi State.

“He was transferred on Friday morning after the Force Headquarters received too much complaints about his conduct,” a police chief said on Saturday afternoon.

Messages about the transfer first spread on social media Saturday morning, eliciting reactions. Many of his critics, however, suggested that only an outright dismissal would be sufficient for Mr Shogunle’s alleged misconduct.

Mr Shogunle was named as the pioneer head of PCRU after it was created to receive complaints against police officers in late 2015.

The department achieved initial credits by following up on allegations of misconduct against officers.

Social media also played a heavy role in amplifying the unit’s activities and response time. But Mr Shogunle soon found himself consumed by social media distraction. He began to exchange regular insults with citizens online, especially on Twitter.

Some commentators said Mr Shogunle’s conduct undermined his unit’s successes, and demanded his removal. Several petitions were filed online for his removal, but it seemed the latest one was what eventually did him in.

Amidst outrage over police clampdown on women in Abuja, Mr Shogunle justified the discriminatory arrests in a manner many considered too objectionable.

Since 2017, Mr Shogunle had also faced online scorn for his frequent ridiculing of #ENDSARS, a nationwide campaign to end police brutality. He described the movement, which has helped many citizens obtain justice against errant police officers, as a scam.

The Force Headquarters had been observing the controversies being courted by Mr Shogunle, who has been based in Lagos.

“We decided it was time to take him out of that important office because he had become an embarrassment,” a police chief said. “We wish him good luck in Ebonyi.”

The senior official, who spoke under anonymity because he was not the police’s spokesperson, said Mr Shogunle’s transfer signal was dispatched on Friday morning.

Police spokesperson Frank Mba could not be reached for comments Saturday afternoon.

Ebonyi police commissioner, Awosola Awotunde, told PREMIUM TIMES Saturday he had not received the signal. Depending on its urgency, a police signal usually take three to four days to reach recipients.

Mr Shogunle, too, did not respond to calls.

SOURCE: BBC/Premium Times

Nnamdi Kanu ‘must appear in court’ – Justice Binta

A Nigerian judge has said she wants missing pro-Biafra leader Nnamdi Kanu back in court after he resurfaced in Israel following his disappearance last year, the AFP news agency reports.

The head of the Indigenous People of Biafra (Ipob) has been charged with treason after campaigning for an independent state called Biafra in south-eastern Nigeria.

In 2009, he set up Radio Biafra, a station that broadcasts to Nigeria from London calling for an independent state for the Igbo people.

He was released on bail last year after spending more than 19 months without trial.

He went missing after his house in the south-eastern Abia state was raided by the military.

But last month a video of him appeared on social media showing him praying at the Western Wall in Jerusalem.

At the hearing in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, judge Binta Nyako ordered the three people who stood surety for Mr Kanu when he was granted bail to produce him in court or forfeit their money, AFP reports.

“I want you to go out to look for Nnamdi Kanu, I gave you a Nnamdi Kanu and you have lost him and I’m not happy with you. I want him back,” she is quoted as saying.

Nigeria army denies planning a coup


The Defence Headquarters has debunked the claim by the Deputy Senate President Senator Ike Ekweremadu that the Army could take over power, saying the “Military has no political ambition.”

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Nigerian army. Photo: Premium Times


The Miliatry’s response was contained in a statement signed by the Acting Director of Defence Information, Brigadier General J.A Agim and distributed by PRNigeria- a Press Releases distribution platform- on Thrsday night.

“The Defence Headquarters wish to state clearly that, the Nigerian Military has come of age and is in tune with best international military practices of complete and total subordination to democratic governance,” he said.

Senator Ekweremadu on Wednesday 7 March 2018, while contributing to a debate on a motion sponsored by Senator Ahmed Ogembe, representing Kogi Central, had stated: “The Problem in Nigeria is that our democracy is receding. Who says army cannot take over, let us not joke with our democracy that is the issue”.

But the Military said while the comment may appear cautionary and sincere in the atmosphere of discourse, it was however derogatory to the Army used in the expression and by extension to the Armed Forces of Nigeria.

“The statement in the true sense has the capacity to denigrate the Nigerian Military in every ramification including its loyalty to the President Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces and the confidence of the general public to defend Nigeria’s democracy.”

It assured the public that the Military will continue to support Nigeria’s democracy.


SOURCE: Daily Trust

Army General leading Nigeria’s war against Boko Haram removed

The Theatre Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole, Attahiru Ibrahim, has been removed from that position.

Mr. Ibrahim’s redeployment comes three days after Boko Haram insurgents carried out one of the deadliest attacks on Biu town in Borno where at least 18 people were killed and 52 others seriously injured.

Mr. Ibrahim, a major general, took over the command of the ongoing counterinsurgency operations in the North-east in May 2017. The former occupant of that position was Lucky Irabor who was redeployed to coordinate the Multi-National Joint Task Force, MNJTF.

Boko Haram attacks appear to have increased since Mr. Ibrahim assumed duties with scores of suicide bombings, mostly by teenage girls, occurring between May and December.

The Chief of Army staff, Tukur Buratai, apparently unimpressed with the way the operation was going, had in August issued a rare ultimatum of ’40 days’ for the theatre commander to arrest the Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, and put an end to the incessant Boko Haram attacks. Neither was achieved.

The insurgents continued to stage daring attacks including on military formations.

Though a large number of Boko Haram hideouts were raided and many terrorists including kingpins reportedly killed by soldiers during the period, well over 50 soldiers including officers were killed between May and now.

Some of the most recent cases were the ambush in Magumeri that caused the death of about 19 soldiers and kidnap of some oil explorers.

The military also suffered a major loss of some 15 soldiers including a commander in November when Boko Haram insurgents attacked troops’ location in Sassawa village near the Yobe State capital, Damaturu.

Also in November, Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, witnessed one of the worst suicide bombings in recent times when four female suicide bombers attacked Muna Gari, a suburb of the city, killing 14 persons.

About 45 persons were also killed and 47 critically injured in November after a suicide bombers detonated their explosives in a mosque in Yola, Adamawa State.

Another suicide bombing was witnessed on December 2 when two teenage suicide bombers attacked Biu market killing at least 18 persons and injuring 52 others.

About two weeks ago, the Chief of Defence Staff, Gabriel Olonisakin, paid a sudden visit to the Command and Control Centre in Maiduguri. Mr. Ibrahim had a closed door session with the defence chief. No reason was given for the CDS’ visit without other service chiefs.

Mr. Ibrahim has now been replaced by Rogers Nicholas, also a major general.

The new Theatre Commander was, until his appointment, the Chief of Logistics at Army headquarters in Abuja. Before that, he was Commander of the Special Security Task Force in Jos as well as Chief of Civil Military Affairs at Army headquarters.

Mr. Ibrahim is believed to have been redeployed to the Army headquarters as the Deputy Chief of Policy and Plans.

Although the army has not officially announced the new deployments to Nigerians, the military radio in Borno has already made the announcements.


SOURCE: The Bloomgist/Premium Times/Channels TV

Nigerian man jailed seven years without trial freed

The Chief Judge of Anambra, Peter Umeadi, on Tuesday discharged a 31-year-old prison inmate, Chukwujekwu Ifejika, who had been in Onitsha Prison for seven years without trial.

Nigerian man jailed seven years without trial freed

In his ruling during his yearly visit to prisons in the state, Mr. Umeadi said that Mr. Ifejika was discharged for lack of criminal record or case file in an alleged case of armed robbery.

According to him, the suspect has been in prison custody for seven years without any hearing in court.

“If the accused was convicted for the crime he was accused of, he would have served seven years in prison and he has spent seven years here,” Mr. Umeadi said.

The chief judge also granted bail to one Chiotu Eluemuno, 32, in the sum of N50,000 with his mother as surety.

Mr. Umeadi, who expressed displeasure over the loss of case file of the accused at the office of the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), ordered that that the accused be granted bail.

In an interview with journalists, Mr. Ifejika expressed mixed feelings over his release, saying he lost his parents while in incarceration.

“I thank God above all things for my freedom today. I did not have anybody to speak for me and I lost my father and mother while in the prison.

“I am going back home to meet relations to tell them my story.

“My incarceration has opened doors for me to learn a lot of handicraft like painting, carpentry and tailoring.

“I am happy, if not for anything; I am going home with this knowledge. I was among the prisoners that painted some parts of the prison,” he said. (NAN).


SOURCE: The Bloomgist/All Africa/Premium Times

Nigerian University employing snake charmers to stop snake bites on Campus 

university in north-west Nigeria is hiring snake charmers to eradicate the danger of fatal snake bites on campus.

Zainab Umar, a final-year economics student at Umaru Musa Yar’Adua University in Katsina state, died last week after a snake bite.

The dean of student affairs, Suleiman Kankara, said charmers had been hired before after snake reports.

Snake charming is commonly practiced in south Asian countries but also in parts of Africa.

Against medical advice, Ms Umar was taken away by her friends and her brother from the university clinic where she had been receiving treatment, Mr Kankara added.

Snake charmers typically play a flute which the snake appears to respond to, often at close striking range.

Astonishingly, the snake seems reluctant to strike despite a flared hood in the case of cobras.

In Nigeria, snake charmers physically handle cobras with their bare hands in street performances and sometimes involve members of their audience.

It is common in the northern part of Nigeria as a form of street entertainment but also as a means of advertising the possession of “special powers, charms or medicines” which are sold to onlookers.

Cameroon invade Cross River, kill six villagers 

Six residents of Danare, a village in Boki local government area of Cross River state have allegedly been shot after Gendarmes from Bodam community in Cameroon invaded the village.

Commissioner of Police in the state, Hafiz Inuwa confirmed the incident.

Inuwa said the residents told him that they were preparing to retaliate because Cameroonians had encroached their land.

“We found out that six persons were shot and they are currently in the hospital as the pellets were being removed from their bodies,” he said.

“They were shot by the people of Bodam village from Cameroon. We have advised the people to restore normalcy and shun all forms of crisis and allow the government to take charge.

“They told us that they were preparing to repel the attack because the Cameroonians had encroached almost 43km into their land.”

Itam Abang, member representing Boki I constituency in the state house of assembly, alleged that over 1,000 cocoa, plantain and banana farms were destroyed by the Cameroonians.

“When we got there, the Danare people had already mobilised for war. Luckily, we arrived on time in company with the commissioner of police and we had to prevail on them not to go into the forest,” he said.

“From where we were standing, we could hear gunshots because the Cameroonians had really encroached into the Danare community.

“And from what my people told me, the Cameroonians have destroyed over 1,000 of their farmlands and this is a huge loss to the farmers.

“We advised residents in the community to hold their peace that the state and federal government were going to step in with a view to restoring peace and normalcy in the area.”

Finnish Diplomats to Nigeria in a deadly car crash

There was road crash this morning on the Abuja airport road, involving a driver of diplomatic vehicle belonging to Finnish embassy and that of Nigeria.

The other party in the crash is the vehicle Airspace Management, that was said to be on high speed and hit the diplomatic vehicle from behind and it somersaulted.

The details is still sketchy and is developing.