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Train attack: Reps hold four-hour meeting with service chiefs

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Leadership of the House of Representatives on Tuesday met with service chiefs, where they expressed dissatisfaction with the attitude of the service chiefs and some heads of agencies invited over the recent attack on a train in Kaduna.

Speaker of the house, Femi Gbajabiamila, said this on Tuesday while briefing journalists at the national assembly in Abuja.

The lower legislative chamber had invited Babagana Monguno, national security adviser (NSA); Bashir Magashi, minister of defence; Isiaka Amao, chief of air staff; Yusuf Bichi, director-general, Department of State Services (DSS); Usman Baba, inspector-general of police (IGP); Hadi Sirika, minister of aviation, and Rotimi Amaechi, minister of transportation.

Also invited were the heads of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), and Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC).

At the meeting held on March 30, the public officials were absent and sent in their representatives instead.

The Deputy Speaker, Idris Wase, had warned that the legislators should not be taken for granted in the course of executing their constitutional responsibility.

On Tuesday, the invited government officials appeared before the panel consisting of members of the house leadership and security committees. The meeting held behind closed-doors.

Addressing reporters after the meeting which lasted for four hours, Gbajabiamila said the legislators had “extensive deliberation” with the invited public officials.

“We had an extensive deliberation. The issues we discussed there —unfortunately defence matters are not for public consumption,” he said.

“But I can assure you, it was a lot of collaboration. A lot of ideas came together in terms of how security agents can work together in one voice, as opposed to different voices.

“We talked about the all-important issue of whether or not there are elements within the military — the issue of mole like some people have stated.

“We talked about training and retraining. We talk about capacity and allowances. A lot of them, like I have said, touched on security. For us to have been there for four to five hours, we made some good headway and extensive decisions were made.”

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Hold Peter Obi, supporters responsible if anything happens to me – Reno Omokri

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Reno Omokri

Former presidential aide, Reno Omokri has raised an alarm over the continued threat to his life and that of his immediate family.

Omokri who served under President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration said Peter Obi and his supporters should be held responsible if anything happens to him and members of his family.

“If anything should happen to my immediate and extended family and I, Peter Obi and his consultant broadcast journalist should be held responsible!”

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Galandachi, National Mosque Imam, cautions politicians against using religion to divide Nigeria

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Elder statesman and Imam (Murshid) of the Abuja National Mosque, Prof. Shehu  Galadanchi

Elder statesman and Imam (Murshid) of the Abuja National Mosque, Prof. Shehu  Galadanchi, has cautioned politicians against using religion to divide Nigerians, saying it would not augur well for the country.

The cleric, who spoke at the National Inter-Religion conference organised by the Kano State government observed that some politicians from both Christianity and Islam, have already started exploiting religion to cause confusion and violence in their campaigns.

He also flayed politicians who out  to rig the coming elections by hook or by crook, alleging that among those determined to use illegal methods to win the polls were those ones deploying religion in their campaigns, including religion, to achieve their goals.

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“Some of our politicians, unfortunately from the two religions, are using their religion to emphasise our differences and causing disagreements, violence and fights among Nigerians.  This has already begun to happen during their campaigns in many places…Let me say that one would be standing on a highly dented ground if he used religion in this manner and at the expense of his own country. I find it pertinent, in a situation like this, to remind ourselves as Nigerians that Almighty Allah has graciously granted us, in this country, unlimited bounties. We have a very beautiful country, this is a very beautiful country, a very fertile country, full of natural and human resources.”

Galadanchi observed that all of these were granted to Nigeria so that its people would work together for its development and to bring it at equal standing with the rest of the developed world.

He restated the need for the political class to be reeducated to recognise the fact that Islam and Christianity preach tolerance and peaceful coexistence among its people and among the members of the human community. SUN

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Obasanjo: 2023 poll should be Nigeria’s turning point

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Former President Olusegun Obasanjo is optimistic that next year would be a turning point for Nigeria after successful general elections.

He however cautioned Nigerians not to allow emotions cloud their sense of judgement at the poll.

Obasanjo spoke on Sunday when the leadership of Mzough U Tiv, a Benue socio-cultural group, paid him a visit at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL) in Abeokuta, Ogun State.

He said the elections should be a turning point for Nigeria, adding that he is in support of a change of leadership from the North to the South.

The former president urged the middle belt to subsequently advocate for power to come to the region.

“If Nigeria is ready to get it right, the 2023 election should be a turning point. We should not go for emotion that will destroy us,” he said.

Obasanjo said with the growing population of the country, agriculture would be the solution to feeding Nigerians and not oil and gas.

“Only farming and agribusiness could tackle the nation’s growing population. Farming and agribusiness is what will feed the nation,” he said.

Obasanjo encouraged Tiv people to focus on farming and agribusiness, adding that he hopes to establish an industry in the state next year.

Iorbee Ihagh, leader of the group, said the visit was “basically to interface with you as our former head of state, a political pillar, a nationalist and elder statesman to appreciate your overwhelming love, passion and concern you have demonstrated over the Tiv people”.

He asked the former president to consider the need for the establishment of a fruit juice industry in Benue state and the power-sharing formula in the country.

“With regards to the current power equation in the country, we in the Mzough u Tiv in conjunction with the Middle Belt Forum had unanimously resolved for power shift from the north to the south for fairness, justice and a true federalism,” he said.

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