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Crossover service: Oyo, Osun relax curfew, Lagos, Ogun restrict movements

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Churches and other religious centres in Oyo State planning to hold crossover night service today leading into the first day of the new year have been permitted to do so as the state government has suspended the 12 midnight to 4am curfew imposed to check the spread of coronavirus nationwide.

Osun State Government has also relaxed the curfew, permitting the crossover service to hold.

But Lagos and Ogun state governments have also insisted that the curfew must be enforced and warned people not to violate the order. The Christian Association of Nigeria and a number of churches have either cancelled the annual programme or made necessary adjustment to end the service early.

The Federal Government had in September imposed the nationwide curfew between 12 midnight and 4am as part of efforts to reduce the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

In Oyo State, a statement issued on Wednesday by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Taiwo Adisa, said crossover services would be allowed to hold in the state.

It, however, added that religious centres must ensure strict compliance with the COVID-19 safety protocols.

Nigeria is currently experiencing a second wave of infections, which has presented a significant increase in the number of new cases and deaths — over 10,000 samples were confirmed positive within the past 14 days.

Oyo currently has the fifth highest number of confirmed coronavirus infections in the country, according to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).

As of December 29, the state had confirmed a total of 3,909 cases, out of which 3,377 recoveries and 46 deaths have been recorded.

The statement by the Oyo state government said with the suspension of the curfew, “officials of the state task force on COVID-19 will ensure strict compliance with the guidelines and advisories during the Yuletide and after.”

“Following a review of the pronouncement of the Technical Team of the Task Force on COVID-19 in Oyo State on 29th December 2020, His Excellency, the Executive Governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde, FNSE, has magnanimously directed that the 12 midnight to 4am curfew be lifted,” the statement read.

“The governor has also warned citizens and residents of Oyo State to ensure strict compliance with the guidelines, protocols and advisories as laid down by the Oyo State COVID-19 Task Force aimed at limiting the transmission of the disease in our communities.

“Secondly, he has directed that enforcement of these guidelines and protocols in accordance with the law, which will be applied as appropriate, enjoining individuals and organisations to comply and by so doing ensure that we all spread the joy of this season and not the virus.”

In Ogun, the state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Waheed Odusile, announced on the state radio, Ogun State Broadcasting Corporation (OGBC), that there would be no movement within the curfew period and urged all worshipers to adhere to the stay-at-home order or make use of the social media platforms for the crossover night service.

A statement by Kunle Somorin, chief press secretary to the state governor, said, “In order to stem the spread of the second wave of the disease, Governor (Dapo) Abiodun advised that “there should be no gatherings of more than 50 people at any event or ceremonies, such as conferences, congresses, office events, concerts, seminars, sporting activities, cross-over nights, end of year parties, weddings, naming, birthdays, anniversaries, street carnivals, etc until further notice”.

But Osun State Government said it rescinded its earlier decision banning churches from holding crossover services in line with the mood of the season.

A statement signed by the Commissioner for Information and Civic Orientation, Mrs Funke Egbemode, said the government’s sensitivity to the mood of the season had necessitated a review of its earlier position.

She said, “The Government of the State of Osun has decided to allow crossover religious gatherings, But any organisation holding crossover service must note that they are expected to close the service early and everyone must be off the streets by 1:00am.

“Security operatives have been given the directive to enforce this guideline. Religious bodies and citizens are therefore advised to comply because we do not want anyone to spend the first day of the year in police custody.”

 

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RAPE: Man, 42, turns friend’s 11-yr-old daughter to sex slave in Plateau

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A 42-year-old man, Jacob Joel, has been remanded in a Jos Correctional Centre for the repeated rape of an 11-year-old girl.

The Police told the court that the victim, who is a friend to the defendant’s daughter, was said to have been defiled allegedly by the defendant when she went to visit her friend.

The defendant, however, pleaded not guilty to the crime.

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The judge, Justice S.P Gang, in his ruling, ordered that the defendant be remanded in prison until Dec. 7, for hearing.

Earlier, the prosecutor, Mrs L. P. Fombot, told the court that the minor had visited the accused home to see her friend, but did not meet her at home.

Fombot said the victim, however, met the accused at home alone who allegedly dragged her into his room, threatened her with a knife, and had carnal knowledge of her.

She alleged that the accused threatened her on several occasions, raping her repeatedly.

The prosecutor said luck, however, ran out on him when he took the minor to the bush to have carnal knowledge of her, but was spotted by her school teacher.

If convicted, the accused could face life imprisonment.

The prosecutor said that during police interrogation, the accused blamed it on the devil, saying ‘the devil tempted him’. (NAN)

Vanguard News Nigeria

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ISWAP leader, Modou Okocha injured, 5 soldiers killed in military convoy ambush

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More than 20 Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP) fighters died Wednesday evening in Ngamdu, Borno State.

The insurgents were eliminated by ground forces and airstrikes during an attempt to breach a military motorcade.

ISWAP commanders, Yaya Ebraheem, Baba Chattimari and Abu Adam Oubaida led the assault on the convoy and a Forward Operating Base (FOB).

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The Jaysh (Army) Deputy Leader in Sambisa, Modou Bacheer Okocha was wounded, an intelligence officer told PRNigeria on Thursday.

He said troops were moving from Damaturu to Maiduguri when they were alerted about an imminent attack.

The contingent made a detour to reinforce the base after sending signals to the Air Force for support.

As they passed through Ngamdu, a border town between Borno and Yobe States, the terrorists opened fire but were defeated.

Fighter jets bombarded ISWAP locations and gun trucks killed many of them. Four soldiers paid the supreme price.

Daily Post

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Police nab high-profile kidnappers of nursing mother, daughter

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The police in Adamawa State have confirmed the arrest of four high-profile kidnappers suspected to have abducted a nursing mother and her daughter, according to a statement by DSP Sulaiman Nguroje on Thursday in Yola.

Nguroje, the command’s spokesperson, said the notorious suspects were also behind the attack on Ngurore Police Station.

The News Agency of Nigeria recalled that on October 10, heavily armed suspected kidnappers attacked Ngurore Police Station at about 2am and also kidnapped the woman, Hauwa Umaru, and her daughter.

DSP Nguroje said operatives of the Anti-Kidnapping Unit of the state command arrested the suspects on Thursday and recovered one AK-47 rifle with 16 rounds of live ammunitions.

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He said: The breakthrough that led to the arrest of the suspects began with the arrest of one Buba Ibrahim a.k.a Babangida , 20, a native of Wuro Bilal village, Ngurore District, Yola South LGA.

“Ibrahim Babangida is one of the principal suspects in the kidnap operation and the confession of the suspect revealed how they abducted Hauwa Umaru, her daughter and  one Alhaji Bahago of Ibbare and also attacked the Ngurore police station.

“The police were assisted by some professional Hunters who apprehended the other three gang members.”

Nguroje identified the three arrested gang members as: Tumba Alhaji Dan Bappa, 25, a native of Ibbare District, Yola south LGA; Buba Alhaji Abdu, a resident of Ibbare, Ngurore District; and Abdullahi Lawal, a resident of Lau Local Government Area in Taraba State.

Nguroje said the suspected criminals were also part of a seven-man syndicate that had been terrorising people of Adamawa and Taraba States.

He said the suspects would be charged to court on completion of investigations.

Eagle Online

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