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Eight dead after gunman opens fire on Russian campus

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A gunman opened fire on a Russian university campus on Monday killing at least eight people, investigators said, in the country’s second mass shooting this year to target students.

Videos circulating on social media showed people throwing belongings from windows of university buildings in the central city of Perm before jumping to flee the shooter.

The Investigative Committee, which probes major crimes, said several people were injured in the attack at Perm State National Research University and that the suspect, a student at the university, had been wounded while being detained.

State media broadcast amateur footage reportedly taken during the attack showing an individual dressed in black tactical clothing, including a helmet, carrying a weapon and walking through the campus.

In a statement carried by Russian news agencies, the health ministry said 24 people were receiving treatment, including 19 who had received gunshot wounds. The health ministry declined to comment when reached by AFP.

“On September 20, a student, who was on the territory of one of the buildings of Perm State National Research University, opened fire on those around him,” the Investigative Committee said in a statement.

Investigators had initially said five people were killed and another six wounded.

School shootings are relatively unusual in Russia due to tight security at education facilities and because it is difficult to buy firearms legally, although it is possible to register hunting rifles.

– Putin offers condolences –
President Vladimir Putin had been notified of the shooting, the Kremlin said, adding that the health and science ministers had been ordered to travel to Perm to coordinate assistance for the victims.

“The president expresses sincere condolences to those who have lost family and loved ones as a result of this incident,” Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.

Regional authorities said that classes at local schools, colleges and universities were cancelled on Monday.

Russia’s last deadly attack at an educational facility took place in May 2021, when a 19-year-old opened fire in his old school in the central city of Kazan, killing nine people.

Investigators said that the gunman suffered from a brain disorder. But he was deemed fit to receive a license for the semi-automatic shotgun he used in the attack.

On the day of that attack — one of the worst in recent Russian history — Putin called for a review of gun control laws.

In November 2019, a 19-year-old student in the far eastern town of Blagoveshchensk opened fire at his college, killing one classmate and injuring three other people before shooting and killing himself.

In October 2018, another teenage gunman killed 20 people at a Kerch technical college in Crimea, the peninsula Russia annexed from Ukraine in 2014.

He was shown in camera footage wearing a similar T-shirt to Eric Harris, one of the killers in the 1999 Columbine High School shooting in the United States, which left 13 people dead.

The Crimea shooter was able to legally obtain a gun licence after undergoing marksmanship training and being examined by a psychiatrist.

The country’s FSB security service says it has prevented dozens of armed attacks on schools in recent years.

The shooting took place as Russia was counting ballots following three-day parliamentary and local elections.

AFP

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Missing ex-Nigerian diplomat found dead in US

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Police in New York, United States, have found the body of a former Nigerian diplomat, Ambassador Ejeviome Otobo.

The 70-year-old was declared missing by the police in Tuckahoe, New York, in United States of America.

Otobo went missing on Wednesday, June 15th and was last seen near Dante Avenue.

The Tuckahoe Police Department on the their Facebook page requested information from the public.

Etobo served as the Director and Deputy Head, Peacebuilding Support Office at the United Nations headquarters in New York between December 2006 and October 2013.

On June 24, the police announced that Etobo had been found dead and sent condolences to his family.

“We would like to thank those of you who offered tips and tried to assist with the investigation. Our thoughts go out to the Otobo family during this difficult time,” the statement read.

Until his death, he was a Non-Resident Senior Fellow in Peacebuilding and Global Economic Policy at the Global Governance Institute in Brussels, Belgium.

He had previously held the position of director and deputy head of the UN Peacebuilding Support Office (PBSO) at the United Nations Headquarters, New York, where he also acted as Assistant Secretary-General from February-August 2009.

At PBSO, he led the efforts in assisting the United Nations Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) to develop peacebuilding strategies, including supporting governance reforms and reconciliation processes for countries on the agenda of the PBC; supervised the work related to the follow-up, monitoring and periodic reporting on the implementation of the peacebuilding strategies; and formulated benchmarks for monitoring progress in the implementation of peacebuilding strategies.

His areas of research interests and writing included peacebuilding, public service reforms, institutional development, governance, regulatory policy and management, and international trade.

He co-edited African Development in the 21st Century: Adebayo Adedeji’s Theories and Contributions (2015) as well as authored Consolidating Peace in Africa: The Role of the United Nations Peacebuilding Commission (2015) and Africa in Transition: A New Way of Looking Progress in the Region (2017). The book Africa in Transition was nominated for the Grand Prix of Literary Association Award in 2018 in the Research category.

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NDLEA nabs Brazilian returnee with cocaine hidden in private parts

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A Brazilian returnee, Igwedum Uche Benson has been arrested in Lagos with pellets of cocaine concealed in his private part.

He was arrested at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja by the operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency.

The agency said Igwedum came in via Ethiopian Airlines from Sao Paulo, Brazil, enroute from Addis Ababa.

A statement signed by spokesman for the agency, Femi Babafemi, said, “Preliminary investigations revealed the suspect had swallowed 50 wraps of cocaine before departing Brazil and excreted 48 pellets in Addis Ababa where he handed them over to another person.

“He however claimed he was unable to excrete the remaining two wraps at the hotel room in Addis Ababa before boarding his flight but later excreted them in the aircraft restroom during the flight from Ethiopia to Lagos.

“In the same vein, after three weeks of painstaking investigation and tracking, operatives of the MMIA command of NDLEA on Saturday night, 25th June arrested a drug kingpin, Onyekachi Chukwuma Macdonald behind attempts to export 40 parcels of Methamphetamine popularly called Mkpuru Mmiri locally to London, United Kingdom, through the NAHCO export shed of the Lagos airport.

“Onyekachi was arrested at Manacola estate, Alakuko area of Lagos at the weekend, three weeks after his Mkpuru Mmiri consignment weighing 2.05 kilogrammes was intercepted at the airport and his freight agent, Peter Christopher Anikan arrested on 7th June.

“During his interview, the suspect said he’s from Ahiazu, Mbaise Local Government Area of Imo state and had lived in Dubai, UAE, for 10 years before returning to Nigeria in 2019.

“He stated that after his return to Nigeria, he opened a phone accessories shop in Sango Otta, Ogun State, but the business collapsed.

“He then started sending cigarettes to London and decided to conceal the illicit drug in the consignment after advice by a friend”.

Closely related is the seizure of another consignment of 2kg Mkpuru Mmiri at a courier house in Owerri, Imo State.

The cargo seized on Wednesday 22nd June had ankara and lace fabrics in which two cylindrical cellophanes containing the drug heading to Hong Kong were concealed.

Also at the Lagos airport, NDLEA operatives on Friday June 24, intercepted 500,000 tablets of Tramadol 225mg packed in 10 cartons and labelled Tramaking imported from Karachi, Pakistan on Emirates Airline.

The consignment weighing 407.60kg was seized during a joint examination with Customs and NAFDAC officials.

Same day, a Dubai, UAE-bound passenger, Alegbeleye Taiwo was arrested at the departure hall of the MMIA with 40 ampoules of pentazocine injection.

The 21-year-old suspect claims he’s from Osun state.

Meanwhile, two kingpins behind the importation of two recent drug consignments from Canada concealed in vehicle containers through the Tincan seaport in Apapa, Lagos have been arrested by NDLEA operatives.

One of them, Gboyega Ayoola Elegbeji, was arrested at his house, 14 Bakare Street, Idi Araba, Lagos on Wednesday 22nd June, for importing a 40ft container TRHU7874497 containing 33 parcels of cannabis indica (Colorado) weighing16.5kg.

The second suspect, Sunday Joe Oyebola, (aka Otunba) was arrested on Thursday 23rd June.

He’s linked to the importation of a 40ft container MEDU4389887 containing four vehicles used to conceal 290 parcels weighing 145kg cannabis indica (Colorado) from Montreal, Canada.

He had been on the run since March and had in the course of the investigation attempted to bribe officers with N10million to influence the case.

Chairman/Chief Executive of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd) commended the officers and men of the MMIA, Tincan, and Imo state Commands of the Agency for the drug seizures and arrests especially of those who thought they could evade the long arm of the law.

He encouraged them and their compatriots across other formations to intensify their efforts towards achieving set goals.

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Lady offers to donate kidney to Ekweremmadu’s daughter

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A lady identified as Martha Uche has offered to donate her kidney to Sonia, daughter of Ike Ekweremmadu, former deputy senate president.

Ekweremadu and his wife, Beatrice, were arrested and charged to court for allegedly bringing a child to the UK for organ harvesting.

The couple were subsequently remanded in custody in the UK while investigations are ongoing.

In a video making the rounds online, Martha said she had a dream where she was instructed to save Sonia’s life.

She said, “I want to do that because I need to help the girl, she is dying. They have already showed me in my dream that I should help the girl.

“I’ve already seen her a long time ago. Even this morning I still had the same dream so I need to do it fast.”

When asked what her demands were for offering to donate her kidney, Martha said, “I do not have any demands for now. I just need to save the girl’s life; that is the most important thing for now.”

The former deputy senate president had written to the UK high commission to support a visa application of a “donor” listed as Ukpo Nwamini David.

In the letter, Ekweremadu said Ukpo was undergoing “medical investigations for a kidney donation to Ms Sonia Ekweremadu”.

Although the police had said the donor was 15, data from his international passport indicate that he is 21 years old.

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