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Osun Residents Fume Over Bread Price Hike, Call For Decisive Measures -As Master Bakers, Al Badr Trade Words



RESIDENTS of the State of Osun are currently fuming over the increment in the prices of various sizes of bread across the state by the Master Bakers’ Association of Nigeria.

According to the residents who spoke with OSUN DEFENDER in different interviews on Wednesday, bread is a major staple food of the common people and increasing the prices would automatically add to the suffering of the people.

The residents urged Governor Adegboyega Oyetola to take decisive measures in curbing the excesses of the Master Bakers’ Association, describing the increment in the bread prices as self-centred and callous.

Some of the residents charged Oyetola to proscribe the association, saying it is inflicting more pains on the masses for desirable profits.

Mr. Ibrahim Olaiya, one of the residents, called on the Governor to borrow a leaf from his counterpart in Ondo and disband all associations that are regulating prices of commodities in the state.

Olaiya maintained that everybody should have the right to sell goods at whatever prices he or she desires without the interference of another person or association.

Another resident, Mrs. Esther Opara, who lives in Ilesa, said it was insensitive for the Master Bakers’ Association to increase the prices of bread in the face of the current hardship confronting the people.

It amounts to wickedness and insensitivity, she said, calling on the State Government to proscribe or regulate the activities of the unions and association in the state.

She added: “I think the government needs to proscribe all these associations or regulate their activities. I am not talking about the master bakers alone. What is happening with the Master Bakers’ Association is applicable to other associations also. They are just exploiting the people. They will just wake up one morning and decide to increase the prices of goods and services without considering the masses.

“Without government putting them in their places, this is going to continue and the overall effect will be on the masses.”

Meanwhile, there are controversies between the Master Bakers’ Association and Al-Badr bakers in Iwo on the implementation of the new bread prices regime.

The association has accused Al-Badr bakers of subsidising the prices of bread and not following government laid-down procedures in producing their bread.

The association also called on government to look into Al-Badr bread making process, saying that the bread might be injurious to the health of the consumers.

Alhaji Ganiyu Bakare, the Chairman of the association, said the increment in bread price is as a result of the hike in the materials being used to produce the staple food.

He said: “The increment in price of bread is due to the high costs of baking materials. At the start of this year, a bag of flour was sold at N12,000 but at present, it is sold at N21,000. Sugar is now N22,000 as against N15,000 that it was before. Yeast and butter are also in the high side.”

OSUN DEFENDER gathered that the non-implementation of the new bread prices led to a clash between workers of the two associations in Iwo on Sunday.

In its reaction, Al-Badr Bakers, a subsidiary of Al-Badr Company, said it did not join the master bakers in increasing prices of bread because it is sensitive to the plight of the common people.

Speaking through the Media Director of Jama’atu Ta’awunil Muslimeen Society of Nigeria, Mr. Luqman Salawudeen, Al-Badr accused the master bakers of selfishness and greed.

According to Salawudeen, the master bakers are only interested in excessive profit-making without considering the suffering of the masses.

He said: “These are the problems we are having with all these associations. They had already increased the prices of bread before and we did not. We are not subsidizing our bread price. We are buying the same baking materials from the same market. The question is: why are they inflicting pains on the masses?

“With the current prices of materials, if they do not increase the price of bread, they will still have their gain.”



Sudan military declares state of emergency after coup, shuts down internet



Sudan’s military leader has declared a state of emergency across the country and dissolved its transitional cabinet, which is seen as a huge blow to the country’s already fragile transition to democracy.

Abdel-Fattah al-Burhan made a televised announcement on Monday as thousands of pro-democracy protesters flooded the streets of the capital Khartoum, and its twin city of Omdurman, after soldiers arrested several government officials.

Among those detained on Monday is Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok. He was moved to an undisclosed location after refusing to issue a statement in support of the coup, said the information ministry, still apparently under the control of Hamdok’s supporters.

The military also raided the television and radio headquarters and shut down the internet. The capital’s airport has been also closed, together with some of the city’s roads and bridges.

At least 12 people have been wounded so far in the protests that have been called by the pro-democracy coalition born out of the uprising which put an end to the 30-year long rule of Omar al-Bashir.

In his announcement, Burhan said that the military will continue the process towards democracy, but dissolved the sovereign council, a joint military and civilian body created to run the country since al-Bashir’s removal.

“We have started our path towards the state of freedom and peace but some political powers are still trying to maintain everything in their hands, without giving attention to political, economic and social threats,” he said.

Al-Burhan said the military will appoint a technocratic government to lead the country to elections, set for July 2023.

But he made clear the military will remain in charge.

“The Armed Forces will continue completing the democratic transition until the handover of the country’s leadership to a civilian, elected government,” al-Burhan said.

The move came just before the military was supposed to hand leadership of the country’s joint military-civilian administration to civilians next month.

The information ministry called his speech an “announcement of a seizure of power by military coup”.

Tensions have been rising for weeks between Sudan’s civilian and military leadership over Sudan’s course and the pace of the transition to democracy.

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Sudan: UN condemns military takeover, PM detention



The United Nations Secretary General António Guterres has condemned the military coup in Sudan, and called for the release of the prime minister and other officials.

He said this in a tweet Monday

In a military takeover on Monday morning, Sudan’s armed forces dissolved a governing council that included civilians and detained the prime minister and other civilian officials, endangering the country’s transition to democracy.
Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, his wife and members of Sudan’s cabinet were detained and taken to an undisclosed location.
In a security alert posted Monday, the US Embassy said it “has received reports that armed forces are blocking certain areas in and around Khartoum” and “internet in Khartoum is non-functional.”

Guterres said the UN would “continue to stand” with the people of the country.

“I condemn the ongoing military coup in Sudan. Prime Minister Hamdok & all other officials must be released immediately. There must be full respect for the constitutional charter to protect the hard-won political transition. The UN will continue to stand with the people of Sudan.”
An aide and office director of Sudan’s now-arrested Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok told CNN that the premier was aware of army plans and was under pressure to dissolve the government.

The adviser, Adam al-Hireika, said that he visited Hamdok on Sunday evening where he discussed the current state-of-affairs.

Hamdok had just met with army chief Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, who declared the coup on state-TV on Monday.

“I say he was cautiously optimistic that there was an opening for agreement, but I think the military side wanted him to dissolve the government and he insisted on not unless there is a process and there is an agreement between political parties,” he told CNN’s Becky Anderson.
“This morning, when I heard about what happened I went to the PM’s residence, he is my boss and friend. I went to his residence unfortunately he wasn’t there. His wife and him were taken to an unknown destination by soldiers,” he added.

Burhan said in a statement that power-shared council and government were dissolved and declared a state of emergency after a balanced power-sharing agreement with the civilian component “became a conflict” over the past two years, “threatening peace and unity” in Sudan.

“What, General Burhan mentions in his address, actually what most of a lot of it was agreed between the two parties, but as the PM stood very strongly against dissolving the government without a process. I think that was the biggest issue of contention,” Hireika said.
Hireika warned of a civil war in Sudan if there was a return to military rule. “
“Well, I think the bigger picture, a return to military rule will mean more civil war in Sudan and instability in the region as a result,” he added.
Amnesty International calls on Sudan authorities “to respect human rights” following military takeover
From CNN’s Mohammed Tawfeeq
Amnesty International has urged the authorities in Sudan “to respect human rights” following the arrest of the country’s Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and other officials in an apparent coup.
“We are concerned by the escalating tensions in Sudan following the reported arrest of the Prime Minister and other civilian leaders and the imposition of an internet shutdown,” Amnesty International said in a post to Twitter on Monday.
Amnesty International “calls on the authorities in Sudan to respect human rights—including the right to life, right to freedom of association, expression and assembly, both offline and on the internet. The right to peaceful protest must be respected, now more than ever.”
General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the head of Sudan’s armed forces, dissolved the power-sharing Sovereign Council and transitional government, saying in a televised statement that an “independent and fair representative government” would assume power until one is elected in 2023. Burhan also announced a state of emergency across Sudan.
Several articles of the constitution were suspended and state governors were removed, Burhan said.
Those arrested by “joint military forces” include various civilian ministers of Sudan’s transitional government and members of Sudan’s sovereign council, the Information Ministry said. CNN could not independently verify the Information Ministry’s claims, however family members said the Minister of Information was one of several senior officials detained.
Protesters who opposed the coup have taken to the streets in the capital Khartoum and have faced gunfire near the military’s headquarters, according to the information ministry.

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Boko Haram attacks Yobe military base, three soldiers injured



Three soldiers were wounded on Saturday when Boko Haram insurgents attacked a military base at Katarko village in the Gujba Local Government Area of Yobe State.

The reportedly insurgents drove into Katarko village in about 10 gun trucks and attacked the military formation.

They were said to have engaged the security operatives at the base in a gun duel.

The Cable reports that troops of the Nigerian Army, who repelled the attack, alongside airstrikes by the Nigerian Air Force, were said to have killed many of the insurgents.

However, a precise number of fatalities had not been ascertained as of the time of filing this report. It was only gathered that three soldiers were injured in the attack.

“Two to three soldiers were injured and have been taken to hospital in Damaturu for treatment,” the source said, adding, “Many Boko Haram members are also feared dead. They were struck by foot soldiers and air support.”


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