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Buhari, Lawan, Tinubu greet new emir of Zauzau

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Buhari, Lawan, Tinubu greet new emir of Zauzau

President Muhammadu Buhari has congratulated the new Emir of Zazzau, Alhaji Ahmed Nuhu Bamalli, and advised him to be leader of all.

Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State on Wednesday had named Bamalli as the19th Emir of Zazzau.

Bamali succeeded Alhaji Shehu Idris, who died Sunday, September 20, 2020.

Bamalli’s emergence followed the cancellation of the selection process following some alleged irregularities and exclusion of some qualified aspirants from the process.

Bamalli was one of the three contenders initially nominated for the post.

The President in a statement said, “I congratulate you on making history by becoming the first emir from the Mallawa ruling house in 100 years. You deserve the appointment and I am confident you will justify the confidence reposed in you.

“While you bask in the glory of the moment, I want you to be the leader to all and treat all your people fairly in the performance of your duties.

“This is a challenging moment and, therefore, I want you to use this opportunity to unite all members of the ruling houses for the interest of your people.”

He prayed to Allah to grant him the wisdom and guidance needed to discharge his duties.

Also,  Senate President Ahmad Lawan in a statement described Bamalli’s appointment as well-deserved and expressed hope that “the new Emir will meet the high expectations of the revered office and justify the trust and confidence that his people have expressed in his character and ability through his selection and appointment.”

He commended the state government and the Zazzau Emirate for the peaceful and smooth transition after the exit of their 18th emir.

National Leader All Progressives Congress (APC) Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Asiwaju, also commended Governor el-Rufai on Bamali’s choice.

Tinubu said, “Ambassador Nuhu Bamalli is a prominent diplomat, tested administrator and a first class traditional title-holder. I congratulate him on his appointment as the 19th Emir of Zazzau.

“My congratulations also go to Governor Nasir el-Rufai for making a prudent appointment.

“As Magajin Garin Zazzau, Ambassador Bamalli distinguished himself as an excellent high chief of the Zazzau Emirate, just as he performed brilliantly well as top diplomat, serving Nigeria as Ambassador to Thailand.

“Like his immediate-past predecessor, Alhaji Shehu Idris, who died last month after 45 years on the throne, Ambassador Bamalli is also a highly detribalised Nigerian and a friend of all. I urge him to continue in that fashion and consolidate on the tremendous gains recorded by the late Emir.”

A frontline contender for the royal seat, Malam Munir Ja’afaru, has accepted the choice of Bamalli as emir and has congratulated the monarch.

Ja’afaru said, “It is with deep sense of gratitude to Almighty SWT that I learnt of the appointment of Magajin Garin Zazzau, Ambassador Ahmed Nuhu Bamalli as the new Emir of Zazzau by Governor Nasir Ahmed el Rufai.”

“May Allah SWT guide, lead and direct his actions on the throne, and usher in peace and prosperity,” the prince said.

A statement from the state government said Governor el-Rufai congratulated the new monarch on his appointment and wished him a peaceful reign.

It stated, “Until his appointment as Emir of Zazzau, Alhaji Ahmed Nuhu Bamalli held the title of Magajin Garin Zazzau and served as Nigeria’s ambassador to Thailand, with concurrent accreditation to Myanmar. He has been a permanent commissioner in the Kaduna State Independent Electoral Commission in 2015.”

It also said the new emir had worked in the banking sector as executive director, and later acting managing director of the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Corporation (NSPMC).

“He was a staff of the Abuja Metropolitan Management Agency before a stint as head of Human Resources at MTel, the mobile communications arm of the old Nigerian Telecommunications Limited (NITEL).

“Alhaji Ahmed Nuhu Bamalli studied law at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria and holds a master’s degree in international relations and diplomacy and a diploma in organisational leadership from Oxford University. He is also a fellow on Conflict Resolution of the University of York, United Kingdom (UK),” it said.

Ambassador Bamalli is a direct descendant of Malam Musa Bamalli, the flag bearer and first Fulani Emir of Zazzau, who ruled from 1804 to 1821.

His father, Nuhu Bamalli, held the position of Magajin Gari (the second most important princely title in the Zazzau Emirate) for 40 years.

Malam Ahmad Nuhu Bamalli acted in the capacity of Magajin Gari, representing his father in public functions for 20 years. He was appointed to the position in 2001, following his father’s death.

He is a direct descendant of the Islamic scholar and founder of the Fulani Empire, Usman Danfodio, from his mother’s side.

His mother is the daughter of Abdulrahman Dikko, and the great granddaughter of Sultan Aliyu Babba and Sultan Muhammadu Bello, as well as Shehu Usman Danfodio.

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400 suspected Boko Haram, bandits’ sponsors arrested

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Security agents have arrested about 400 businessmen for allegedly funding operations of Boko Haram and bandits in the country.

Daily Trust reported that the businessmen were arrested in an operation coordinated by the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA), and in collaboration with the Department of State Services (DSS), Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

President Muhammadu Buhari was said to have approved the operation in 2020.

The newspaper reported that an initial list of 957 suspects comprising bureau de change (BDC) operators, gold miners and sellers, and other businessmen is being acted upon.

A source told the newspaper that about 400 persons were arrested in Kano, Borno, Abuja, Lagos, Sokoto, Adamawa, Kaduna and Zamfara.

Names of the BDC operators arrested were given as Baba Usaini, Abubakar Yellow (Amfani), Yusuf Ali Yusuf (Babangida), Ibrahim Shani, Auwal Fagge, and Muhammad Lawan Sani, a gold dealer.

Those arrested are reportedly being kept in military and the DSS facilities in Abuja and other places.

“Because this is economic warfare against the insurgents and other militant groups, the president, when approving the operation directed that the NFIU take the lead as the country’s financial intelligence powerhouse,” Daily Trust quoted a source to have said.

The source added that “with the presidential approval, a task team was composed of personally selected senior officers who were deployed under the DIA to carry out the special assignment”.

“The main person coordinating the funding ring for Boko Haram is in our custody, he and his closest ally in the business,” he said.

Another source was quoted to have said about 19 BDCs owned by persons with “direct connection with Boko Haram” were uncovered, while over N300 billion was found to have been used in funding terrorism.

Apart from one person in Borno and another in Zaria, Kaduna state, the source said over N50 billion were traced in funding to the armed groups.

“A number of those arrested have divulged vital information including operational details of bandits and Boko Haram insurgents. But they are being kept to aid further arrests,” the source was quoted to have said.

Family members of those arrested, the newspaper reported, have been calling on the government for their release.

In 2020, six Nigerians were also jailed in the United Arab Emirates for allegedly funding Boko Haram.

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Former Ondo deputy governor agrees to return vehicles

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Former Ondo Deputy Governor Agboola Ajayi has finally agreed to return the two vehicles in his possession to the Ondo State Government.

The state government last week said it would embarrass Agboola if he failed to return the four vehicles.

But Agboola, who said he had only two vehicles, insisted they were part of his benefits.

The state government also petitioned the Ondo State Police Command to help recover the vehicles.

In a statement on Sunday, the former deputy governor said he was not the problem of Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu’s administration.

Agboola stated it was in the interest of everybody that Governor Akeredolu demonstrated good governance, transparent policy making and effective change.

He said it was unfortunate some members of the inner circle of Akeredolu have prioritised harassing him on a number of issues most especially the return of vehicles

Agboola said he hoped “these petty interactions would have ceased after the recent inauguration.

“To be clear – if the return of these two vehicles will make the administration focus more on the avalanche of pressing needs, challenges and predicaments facing the state most especially insecurity, the absence of governance and unpaid salaries across the entirety the Ondo public sector – then I’m ready to make the sacrifice and return the two vehicles which they so desperately need.

“I am not the problem of the present administration. I have moved on.”

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Pensioners demand payment of N35bn arrears

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Nigeria pensioners who retired from the electricity sector have urged President Muhammadu Buhari, to come to their aide in order to resolve the lingering issue of their owed N35billion pension arrears.

The pensioners under the aegis of Electricity Sector Retiree Welfare Association (ESREWA), led by its  President, Elder Benjamin Amako, asked President Buhari to save countless dying pensioners whose fate are tied to the delayed payment of their pension arrears.

Rising from its National Executive Council (NEC) meeting in Abuja, Amako said every Nigerian, including President Buhari, knows the pathetic situation of pensioners in the country.

Amako said: “First we thank God that Mr President returned from his medical trip healthier, stronger and successfully. The news of his return gave us pensioners so much joy because we know  he will not sit quiet and watch more pensioners lose their lives because of humanly inaction. So far, his administration has ensured that pensioners gets their rights and this arrears we are asking for is our right.

“Interestingly, President Buhari had already directed that this same arrears (N35billion) be paid to us, but for over five years ago he issued the directive, the relevant authorities who it is their responsibilities to ensure we get this arrears for our dying members seems to be working contrarily.

“So for the past five years, these arrears have always been part of the National Budget under Nigeria Electricity Liability Management Company (NELMCO) budget and accordingly transferred to Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD). But sadly, we have not been paid a dime even as I speak, for reasons that are totally and obviously human making.

“So we are pleading with President Buhari, the SGF, Minister of Finance, Chairman Senate Committee on Power, Accountant General of the Federation, PTAD and other relevant authorities to save our lives by paying us this money without further delay.”

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