Connect with us

News

Northern leaders back control of social media

Published

on

  • Allege #EndSARS protest was hijacked to topple Buhari administration

Northern leaders made up of influential people such as state governors, Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, top traditional rulers and senior political officers, among others rose from a crucial meeting Monday on the state of the nation with a resolution backing the plan by the Federal Government to censor the social media use.

The Ministers of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has been championing the campaign for the control of the social media by the Federal Government, insisting that its platforms are being used to spread fake news and subversive information.

His counterpart at the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Sunday Dare, also said on Monday that the FG contemplated shutting down the social media space during the recent nationwide EndSARS protest, saying the protest brought home the dangers of fake news.

The northern leaders, who also reaffirmed their commitment to the indivisibility, indissolubility and oneness of Nigeria, alleged that those pushing for superlative agitations and other change-regime actions outside the ballot box hijacked the peaceful #EndSARS protests to further their separatist agenda.

Members of the Northern States Traditional Rulers Council led by the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar III, attended the meeting.

Their meeting presided over by the northern governors forum’s Chairman and Plateau State Governor, Mr Simon Lalong, was attended by governors of Kaduna, Kebbi, Kwara and Zamfara States.

The governors of Kogi and Kano states were represented by their deputies.

The leaders, in a communiqué issued after the meeting, decried “the devastating effect of the social media in spreading fake news,” and called for a “control mechanism and censorship of the social media practice in Nigeria.”

The communiqué read by Lalong frowned on “the subversive actions of the #EndSARS change protest” and declared support for a united and indivisible Nigeria.

“The meeting rejects and condemns the subversive actions of the #EndSARS change protest,” it said, adding, “The superlative agitations and other change-regime actions outside the ballot box soon take advantage of the peaceful protests to push for their separatist agenda.”

They applauded the major reforms going on in the police force even as they pledged to support President Muhammadu Buhari to succeed.

It also drew attention to the need to protect the FCT against unwarranted and destructive protests.

“The meeting raises attention on the need to keep a strict watch on the Federal Capital Territory to guide against unwarranted and destructive protests to safeguard critical assets of the nation,” it said.

The leaders said they had resolved to support the police to serve the country better and called for the building of trust between the people and the police.

They commended the National Assembly and the presidency for being proactive in addressing the issues raised by the #EndSARS protesters across the country.

They also expressed concern over the lingering strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and called for an amicable resolution of the issues to enable students to resume their studies.

The northern leaders called for engagement with other critical stakeholders such as religious leaders, the business community, and youth leaders, resolving to set up two major engagement committees – namely Committee on Roles of Traditional Rulers Membership, headed by the Emir of Lafia, Alhaji Sidi Muhammad, and Committee on Youth and Civil Societies headed by the Emir of Zazzau (Zaria), Alhaji Nuhu Bamalli, which are to commence work immediately.

They commended the role of religious leaders, such as the Ulamas, the Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI) and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), for their positive interventions in resolving the #EndSARS conflicts.

The leaders called for collective efforts in addressing the lingering challenges of the North, especially the Almajiri system, insecurity, illiteracy, poverty, and others.”

The Deputy Speaker House of Representatives, Hon. Idris Wase; and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr Boss Mustapha, attended the meeting.

Others were the Minister of Information and Culture; Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari; and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Minister, Mallam Mohammad Bello.

News

Zamfara killings: Buhari says it’s time to crush bandits

Published

on

President Muhammadu Buhari was aghast by the latest orgy of violence visited on innocent people in Zamfara State by bandits and issued a fresh order to security agents to crush the gunmen.

More than 25 people were killed in attacks on Gobirawa, Rini, Gora, and Madoti Dankule in Bakura and Maradun LGAs in Zamfara — the death toll has since risen.

The gunmen were said to have invaded the communities on motorcycles and shot sporadically, on Wednesday.

Reacting, Buhari said the “insane and persistent violence against innocent people must stop”, adding that “such wanton disregard for life will be brought to an end sooner than later”.

A statement by presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu, on Thursday quoted Buhari to have said this, adding,“These criminals should stop pushing their luck too far by believing that the government lacks the capacity to crush them.

“The violence against poor villagers who are struggling with poverty and other severe economic challenges is not going to be tolerated by this administration.”

He directed security agencies to close all existing gaps in their operations while expressing hope that the special operation launched by security agencies will prove decisive in ridding the state of the “frequent and horrifying” bandit activities.

“Let’s not give these criminals any opportunity to succeed by taking the war to their own camps and stop them in their tracks before they even have the time to respond under our massive fire power,” the president added.

Buhari reassured residents of the state of his administration’s determination to defeat the enemies, despite the latest setback.

Continue Reading

News

MASSOB rejects UK asylum offer, says it’s plot against Biafra

Published

on

The Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) has turned down the United Kingdom’s offer of asylum for its members.

It said the offer was an arrangement probably taken with President Muhammadu Buhari and the Federal Government to divert the attention of the people of Biafra.

A statement by MASSOB leader, Uchenna Madu, made available to journalists in Enugu, said the asylum offer was part of plans by the Buhari regime hatched with the British government against the emergence of Biafra.

The statement read in part, “The government of Britain is the sole architecture of the political, economic and religious problems of the people of Biafra in Nigeria even till today.

“It has not shown any remorse or apologise to the people of Biafra.

“Britain killed, maimed mesmerised and wounded our fathers, mothers and brethren through the Hausa Fulanis. MASSOB rejects their asylum gift.

“How can the chief persecutor of the people of Biafra suddenly turn to be our pacesetter? Britain and Nigeria can no longer deceive the world again concerning the plights of the people of Biafra.

“Our unified resilience, resolutions and unshakable spirit of no surrender will continue to hunt down this geographical expression called Nigeria.

“MASSOB demands referendum on Biafra not asylum.”

Continue Reading

News

Security: Avoid 14 Nigerian states, US warns citizens

Published

on

The United States has asked its citizens to stay away from 14 Nigerian states considered as hotspots of terrorism, banditry and kidnapping.

It stated this in its latest travel advisories even as it urged its citizens to “Reconsider travel to Nigeria”.

The US State Department in the updated advisory added at least 116 countries this week to its ‘Level Four: Do Not Travel’ list.

The UK, Canada, France, Israel, Mexico, Germany and others are on the list, citing a “very high level of COVID-19.”

Before Tuesday, the State Department listed 34 out of about 200 countries as “Do Not Travel.” The State Department now lists 150 countries at Level Four.

Nigeria is categorised as Level 3.

Unlike countries categorised as Level 4, based on the advice of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Nigeria has a good rating on COVID-19 prevalence.

“The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 1 Travel Health Notice for Nigeria due to COVID-19, indicating a low level of COVID-19 in the country”, the State Department said.

It listed areas American visitors should avoid, while in Nigeria as Borno, Yobe, and northern Adamawa states due to terrorism and kidnapping, Bauchi, Gombe, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, and Zamfara states due to kidnapping.

It also banned American citizens from going to Coastal areas of Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, and Rivers states (with the exception of Port Harcourt) due to crime, kidnapping, and maritime crime.

In a country summary on Nigeria, the U.S. State Department wrote:

“Violent crime – such as armed robbery, assault, carjacking, kidnapping, hostage taking, banditry, and rape – is common throughout the country.

“Kidnappings for ransom occur frequently, often targeting dual national citizens who have returned to Nigeria for a visit, as well as U.S. citizens with perceived wealth. Kidnapping gangs have also stopped victims on interstate roads.

“Terrorists continue plotting and carrying out attacks in Nigeria, especially in the Northeast.

“Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting shopping centers, malls, markets, hotels, places of worship, restaurants, bars, schools, government installations, transportation hubs, and other places where crowds gather. Terrorists are known to work with local gangs to expand their reach.

“There is civil unrest and low-level armed militancy in parts of Southern Nigeria, especially in the Niger Delta region. Armed criminality, including kidnapping and maritime crime, is also pervasive in this region.”

Continue Reading

Trending