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DSS files terrorism charges against blogger who streamed Igboho’s house raid on Facebook

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Kayode Oyero

The Department of State Services has filed terrorism charges against Amudat Babatunde, a female blogger who did a Facebook Live around 2am on July 1, 2021, when the DSS in a joint operation with sister agencies raided the Ibadan residence of Yoruba Nation agitator Sunday Adeyemo also known as Sunday Igboho.

Babatunde and Noah Oyetunji (male) are two of the 12 detained aides of the activist yet to be released by the secret police despite that a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on August 4, 2021 had granted them bail.

Known as ‘Lady K ifeoluwa show’ on Facebook, the blogger with over 17,000 followers had turned on her Facebook Live on the midnight of July 1 during the raid of Igboho’s house by the Nigerian security forces.

Seated on a bed in a room in one of the apartments in Igboho’s residence in the Soka area of Ibadan, a fear-torn Lady K had made a 12-minute video, alerting the world that DSS operatives had “attacked” the residence of her boss.

In the video which is still on her Facebook page as of the time of filing this report, an alarmed Lady K had said, “Please share this video, soldiers have attacked Chief Sunday Igboho’s house. We are under attack. Nigerian soldiers have attacked us at Chief Sunday Igboho’s house.

“You can hear the gunshots. This is about 2am. They have been shooting for over 10 minutes now. I had to confirm it before coming on this Live. I heard their gunshots from my sleep. I can’t come out now. They told me not to come out but alert the world through this Facebook Live.”

Igboho’s spokesman, Olayomi Koiki, had also alleged that the DSS removed the closed-circuit television in his principal’s house after the raid, an allegation the DSS has not denied.

Lady K was said to be a member of the media team of the Yoruba Nation arrowhead before the DSS arrested her alongside 11 others during the raid. The secret police also said its operatives killed two other associates of the activist during a “gun duel”.

Lady K and 11 others had approached the court through their lawyers to exercise their constitutional rights to freedom.

Justice Obiora Egwuatu of the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja had on August 4, 2021, granted bail to the 12 detainees but the DSS freed 10 of them last week and held back the blogger and Oyetunji after over 60 days in detention following their arrest since July 1.

One of the detainees’ lawyer, Pelumi Olajengbesi, had appealed to the DSS to respect court orders and release Lady K and Oyetunji on bail while three Senior Advocates of Nigeria – Femi Falana, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa and Ifedayo Adedipe – had said that the DSS was inviting anarchy and lawlessness into the country by not obeying the order for the release of the detainees.

Olajengbesi had also threatened to institute contempt of court proceedings against the DSS director-general, Yusuf Bichi.

However, in a suit marked FHC/ABJ/CR/305/2021, which was dated August 31, 2021, the DSS through one of its lawyers, S.M. Bello, filed five terrorism charges against Oyetunji and Babatunde also known as Lady K.

The DSS alleged that Oyetunji and Lady K were in possession of firearms for terrorism-related activities while it specifically alleged that Lady K promoted terrorist acts through her Facebook account.

“That you Amudat Habibat Babatunde (f) adult of Okeara of Ibadan, Oyo State did use your Facebook account as a platform to promote terrorist activities contrary to Section 18 (1 &2) of the Cybercrimes Prohibition Prevention Act 2015,” count five on the charge sheet read.

The court has not fixed any date for the hearing.

But reacting in a chat with The PUNCH, Olajengbesi described the charges as “baseless, vexatious, shameful and without limbs.”

Igboho, wanted by the DSS for alleged arms trafficking, has been in detention in Cotonou, Benin Republic, since July 19, 2021 when he was arrested at an airport as he tried to board a Germany-bound flight.

Watch Facebook Live by Lady K around 2am on July 1, 2021

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Lai Mohammed insists no proof protesters were killed at Lekki tollgate

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Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has said there is no proof that any protester was killed at the Lekki tollgate in Lagos in October 2020 during the #EndSARS protest.

Some soldiers on October 20, 2020 were said to have opened fire on protesters in an attempt to disperse them allegedly leading to the death of many.

Mohammed, who addressed a press conference in Abuja on Wednesday, described the 2020 event at the tollgate as a “phantom massacre”.

“Today marks the first anniversary of the phantom massacre at Lekki tollgate in Lagos, which was the culmination of an otherwise peaceful protest that was later hijacked by hoodlums,” the minister said.

The minister also said, “At earlier press conferences, I had called the reported massacre at the tollgate the first massacre in the world without blood or bodies.

“One year later, and despite ample opportunities for the families of those allegedly killed and those alleging a massacre to present evidence, there has been none: No bodies, no families, no convincing evidence, nothing. Where are the families of those who were reportedly killed at the toll gate? Did they show up at the Judicial Panel of Inquiry? If not, why?”

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Adebanjo leads Afenifere chieftains on visit to Tinubu

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Chief Ayo Adebanjo, leader of Pan-Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, has led other chieftains of the body on a visit to national leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, at his home in Lagos.

Others on the visit are Chief Supo Sonibare, Oba Olaitan Oladipo, and retired Assistant Inspector General of Police, Tunji Alapini.

The visit came a few days after Tinubu returned from a medical trip to the United Kingdom where he underwent knee surgery.

The Punch reported that the last time Tinubu and Adebanjo met was in April when the former Afenifere spokesman, Yinka Odumakin, died.

Prior to the visit, Adebanjo had told PUNCH Online interview programme, The Roundtable, that the reason why Tinubu had been silent on the herdsmen crisis was that he felt President Muhammadu Buhari would make him his successor.

In another interview with SUNDAY PUNCH, Adebanjo stated that Buhari won’t hand over power to Tinubu, adding that they were both deceiving each other.

He said, “I have said it openly before and I would say it again that Buhari is deceiving Tinubu and Tinubu is deceiving Buhari. I’m an old man and I’m a funeral candidate already, so quote me. If Tinubu contests the primary in APC today, he will fail.”

Adebanjo then advised Tinubu and other APC members from the South-West to leave the party in the interest of Yorubaland.

 

He said, “I have always told them, from Tinubu downwards, that it’s better they save themselves speedily. I’m talking to all of them, that in the interest of Yorubaland and the country, they should get out of the carcass they call APC. I made a public pronouncement that they were a conglomeration of incompatibles. It’s on record. I said it then and I’m still saying it now; if they don’t save themselves early enough, then they are ready for a disaster.”

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Kaduna gives civil servants 12-day ultimatum on COVID vaccine

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The Kaduna State Government has given all civil servants in the state 12 days to receive the COVID-19 vaccine or be barred from office.

The ultimatum was announced in a statement issued on Tuesday by Muyiwa Adekeye, spokesman for the state governor, Nasir el-Rufai.

According to him, all civil servants are expected to be vaccinated by October 31, after which they would be denied entry into government offices if they failed to comply with the directive.

“The Kaduna State Government will from 31st October 2021 require compliance with COVID-19 protocols, especially facemasks and vaccination, for access to its offices,” the statement said.

“The Ministry of Health has since commenced the vaccination of all civil servants, and this is expected to be completed by 31st October 2021. All civil servants are required to be vaccinated by that date.

“Visitors to government offices will need to present their vaccination cards. Given the limited supply of vaccines that are currently available, visitors that have not yet been vaccinated will, in the interim, be permitted entry upon presentation of evidence of registration with the state Ministry of Health for the purpose of vaccination, while wearing their facemasks.”

Adekeye said the decision was taken following a review by the Kaduna COVID-19 task force, and urged residents to ensure strict adherence to the protocol for preventing the spread of infections.

According to the statement, Amina Mohammed-Baloni, Kaduna commissioner for health, has also asked residents to register at the nearest primary health centres for vaccination “so that the relevant authorities can easily contact them as more Covid-19 vaccines become available”.

The development comes weeks after Edo began its ‘no vaccination, no entry’ campaign, which bars unvaccinated civil servants from entering government offices.

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