News: Interpol arrests Nyanya blast mastermind in Sudan

The terror fugitive behind the Nyanya bombing, Aminu Sadiq Ogwuche who was declared wanted by the Nigerian Police Force has been arrested.
This was announced today in Abuja at the National Briefing Centre, located at headquarters of National Orientation Agency (NOA). The coordinator of the national briefing centre, Director General of NOA, Mr. Mike Omeri, said Ogwuche was arrested in Sudan.
He said:
Aminu Sadiq Ogwuche who was earlier declared wanted has been arrested in Sudan with the effortsof the Army, DSS, the National Bureau of the Interpol based at the Nigerian
Police Force Headquarters and security operatives of Sudan”.
Omeri further stated that the security operatives are already working to ensure his extradition back to Nigeria from where he was arrested.
The arrest came after the National Bureau of the Interpol based at the Nigerian Police Force Headquarters issued an international red alert for the search and arrest of terror fugitive.
Reports say Ogwuche, a U.K.-born son of a retired colonel, was once arrested on terrorism-related charges but was released upon pressure from his father and the human rights community. It was when his father was asked to produce his son and he couldn’t that it was learnt that the wanted man had escaped to Sudan.

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News: ‘Nothing wrong negotiating with Boko Haram’ – Northern leaders

Contrary to the position of many Nigerians, two northern groups have said that there is nothing wrong with the plan by the government to negotiate with Boko Haram in order to secure the freedom of the girls seized by the terrorists from their school in Chibok, Borno State, over a month ago.
Boko Haram released a video showing the missing Nigerian schoolgirls, alleging they had converted to Islam and would not be released until all their members in prison were freed.
Chairman of the Northern Elders Council, NEC, Alhaji Tanko Yakassi, and the National Coordinator of Northern Politicians, Academics, Professionals and Businessmen, NPAPB, Dr. Junaid Mohammed, in separate interviews with Vanguard yesterday, threw their weight behind the plan by the Federal Government to dialogue with the sect in a bid to free the girls.
Meanwhile, President Goodluck Jonathan has rejected the idea of a swap of Boko Haram prisoners for the schoolgirls, Britain’s Minister for Africa said after talks with him in Abuja, yesterday.
“He made it very clear that there would be no negotiations with Boko Haram that involved a swap of abducted schoolgirls for prisoners,” Mark Simmonds told a news conference.
The northern leaders, who are delegates to the ongoing National Conference, said the Federal Government had no option than to negotiate in good faith with the sect to return the children to their parents and end their agony.
“As far as we are concerned, discussion with the group is a step in the right direction. There is no substitute to dialogue. What we want in this country is peace.”
The leader of NPAPB, Mohammed, said that despite the provocation by Boko Haram, the Federal Government should seize the offer made by the sect and dialogue in utmost good faith to free the children.
According to Mohammed, the attention of the Federal Government and men of goodwill should be focused on securing the release of the children unharmed and returning them to their parents.
The Second Republic politician, who described Boko Haram as a repugnant group that does not represent the interest of anyone, asked the government to learn lessons from what the sect had done in recent years and bring it to an end.

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News: Pope Francis joins #BringBackOurGirls campaign

Pope Francis joined the #BringBackOurGirls campaign when he tweeted the tweet below.

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News: Nigeria enters list of unsafe countries for babies to live. See full list

Nigeria has gained itself more negative publicity in the media again.
Out of 178 countries in the world, Nigeria is 171 – making it one of the most dangerous countries in the world to bring a child into.
This new report was by Save the Children‘s 15th annual State of the World’s Mothers Report.
Finland is the safest place, followed by Norway, Sweden and Iceland.
10 African countries round up the list of 178 countries, making them the worst countries.
Nigeria and Democratic Republic of Congo account for a staggering 20 percent of child deaths.
At 178, Somalia is the most dangerous country for pregnant women and young children in the world. This is due to natural disaster as well as persistent conflict.
The report also states that six percent of women in the African country are likely to die of a maternal cause, and a staggering 15 percent of children will perish before they turn five.
Health, education and the economy in all 178 nations help determine which are the safest and happiest for mothers and children to live in.

See lists
The Top 10
1. Finland
2. Norway
3. Sweden
4. Iceland
5. Netherlands
6. Denmark
7. Spain
8. Germany
9. Australia*
9. Belgium * (tied)
Bottom 10
169. Cote d’Ivoire
170. Chad
171. Nigeria
172. Sierra Leone
173. Central African Republic
174. Guinea-Bissau
175. Mali*
175. Niger* (tied)
177. Democratic Republic of Congo
178. Somalia

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News: Police gives reasons for its in-efficiency

The Tin-Can Island and RORO Ports Police Command, Lagos, said on Friday that lack of operational patrol vehicles, manpower and communication gadgets had affected its operations at the port.
Mr Olusegun Ajamolaya, Divisional Police Officer, made the disclosure when the Commissioner of Police, Western Port, Mr Kayode Aderanti, visited the command.
Ajamolaya said that the command had no patrol vehicle in the last five years except the one it received from MRS Oil and Gas Ltd.
He said the Nigerian Ports Authority had requested from stakeholders as part of their corporate social responsibility for vehicles for the command only MRS Oil and Gas responded to the call.
He added that the command needed more officers due to the dearth of manpower at the command.
“The recent demobilisation of personnel of the command has affected its manpower to cover vulnerable spots.
“The total strength of RORO division is now 65 and five are sent to the command headquarters every week on special duties.
“Twelve out of the 65 cannot bear arms or deployed on night duties for reasons of their gender,’’ the divisional police officer said.
He said that the same problem was applicable to the Tin Can Island division as 10 out of the 54 manpower could not bear arms.
He appealed to the commissioner to look into the distribution of personnel in the command to address the shortfall.
Ajamolaya said the command lacked communication gadgets, poor power and poor water supply and kits.
He said that in spite of the challenges the officers and men would continue perform their duties.
He urged the commissioner to raise the challenges again during an interactive meeting with maritime stakeholders and the Nigeria Ports Authority.
Responding, the commissioner said that communication gadgets were imported tools of operation and that the officers did not need to request for them before they were provided.
Aderanti said it was regrettable that there were no operational serviceable vehicles for the police officers to work with.
“It is a sensitive environment. I don’t think we should operate at the port without the necessary tools. We are supposed to have an adequate communication network at the port,” he said.
Aderanti added that the problem of shortage of manpower at the command would be solved soon.
He urged the officers and men to exhibit high level of professionalism in the performance of their duties. [NAN]

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News: ‘These kidnapping are unconscionable’ – Michelle Obama

US First lady Michelle Obama condemned the “unconscionable” kidnapping of more than 200 Nigerian schoolgirls, saying the action was taken by “a terrorist group determined to keep these girls from getting an education.”
“Like millions of people across the globe, my husband and I are outraged and heartbroken” over the mass kidnapping by the terrorist group Boko Haram, the first lady said Saturday in the White House weekly address.
President Barack Obama has directed his administration to do everything possible to help the Nigerian government, she said.
The first lady has joined the President in the past in delivering the White House weekly address, but this was her first time delivering it solo.
Boko Haram kidnapped hundreds of Nigerian schoolgirls in April, an act that has become the focal point of a worldwide social media campaign demanding their return.
Earlier this week, the first lady tweeted a photo of herself with a sign that said: #BringBackOurGirls.

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News: Amnesty International claims military was pre-informed of abduction, military denies claims

The  human rights group,Amnesty International (AI), yesterday  returned a damning verdict on the  military for its handling of  last month’s  abduction of 276 students of the Government Girls Secondary School,Chibok by terrorists.
The group claimed in a lengthy report in Abuja that despite having been tipped off by residents four hours before insurgents of the Islamist sect,Boko Haram, struck at the school, security forces  deployed in Borno State  failed to live up to expectation.
It is the first   technical /operational insight into the abduction .
It said its  investigation revealed that only 17 soldiers and fewer policemen were on ground in Chibok.
They lacked  resources to  withstand the  rampaging Boko Haram insurgents and  were easily overpowered  while   attempting  to repel the invaders, it said.
 Amnesty International  said that had the military been pro-active,the Boko Haram attack could have been averted.
“The Nigerian security forces failed to act on advance warnings about Boko Haram’s armed raid on the state-run boarding school in Chibok which led to the abduction of more than 240 schoolgirls on 14-15 April,” the group said in the report which it explained was based on testimonies it gathered and which were independently verified..
The security forces,according to it, “ had more than four hours of advance warning about the attack but did not do enough to stop it,” adding  that the military headquarters in Maiduguri was “aware of the impending attack soon after 7pm on 14 April, close to four hours before Boko Haram began their assault on the town.”
It  said”but an inability to muster troops – due to poor resources and a reported fear of engaging with the often better-equipped armed groups – meant that reinforcements were not deployed to Chibok that night.
“The small contingent of security forces based in the town – 17 army personnel as well as local police –attempted to repel the Boko Haram assault but were overpowered and forced to retreat. One soldier reportedly died.”
Giving  graphic details of its findings on the distress signals raised by locals before the abduction,Amnesty International said:  “Between 7pm on 14 April and 2am on 15 April, the military commands in Damboa, 36.5 km away from Chibok, and Maiduguri, 130 km away from Chibok, were repeatedly alerted to the threat by both security and local officials.
“According to sources interviewed by Amnesty, local civilian patrols (known as “vigilantes”, set up by the military and local authorities) in Gagilam, a neighbouring village, were among the first to raise the alarm on the evening of 14 April after a large group of unidentified armed men entered their village on motorbikes and said they were headed to Chibok.
“This set off a rapid chain of phone calls to alert officials, including the Borno State Governor and senior military commanders based in Maiduguri.”
It quoted a local official who was contacted by Gagilam residents  as saying:”At around 10:00 PM on 14 April, I called [several] security officers to inform them about earlier information I had received from the vigilantes in Gagilam village. They had told us that strange people had arrived in their village that evening on motorbikes and they said they were heading to Chibok.I made several other calls, including to Maiduguri. I was promised by the security people that reinforcement were on their way.”
Continuing,the group said:”Another local official was contacted by herdsmen who said that armed men had asked where the Government Girls Secondary School was located in Chibok.
“At around 11:45 PM, a convoy reportedly numbering up to 200 armed Boko Haram fighters – on motorbikes and in trucks – arrived in Chibok town and engaged in a gunfight with a small number of police and soldiers based there.
“Outnumbered and outgunned, the security forces eventually fled in the small hours of 15 April. Some of the Boko Haram fighters proceeded to the Government Girls Secondary School and abducted more than 240 schoolgirls.”
The AI said it spoke with two military officers who admitted that the military knew of the pending attack.
“Two senior officers in Nigeria’s armed forces confirmed that the military was aware of the planned attack even prior to the calls received from local officials.
“One officer said the commander was unable to mobilize reinforcements. He described to Amnesty the difficulties faced by frontline soldiers in north-eastern Nigeria:
“There’s a lot of frustration, exhaustion and fatigue among officers and [troops] based in the hotspots…many soldiers are afraid to go to the battle fronts.
“Amnesty’s requests for a reaction from the military headquarters in Abuja have gone unanswered.
“Since the 14 April raid, a climate of confusion and suspicion appears to have slowed down the Nigerian authorities’ efforts to locate and free the abducted schoolgirls.
“On 16 April, a senior Defence Ministry spokesperson said that almost all of the abducted girls had been rescued and only eight were still missing. The next day he had to retract that statement.
AI’s Africa Director  of  Research and Advocacy, Netsanet Belay who released the report  asked the Federal Government to bring back the girls safely.
Belay also called for effective collaboration by all agencies to rescue the abducted girls.
His words: “The fact that Nigerian security forces knew about Boko Haram’s impending raid, but failed to take the immediate action needed to stop it, will only amplify the national and international outcry at this horrific crime.
“It amounts to a gross dereliction of Nigeria’s duty to protect civilians, who remain sitting ducks for such attacks. The Nigerian leadership must now use all lawful means at their disposal to secure the girls’ safe release and ensure nothing like this can happen again.
“The climate of suspicion and lack of transparency about the rescue effort has been unhelpful – all authorities must work together to ensure the girls are brought home safely and more must be done to protect civilians in future.”
It asked the federal government  to provide adequate information to families of  the abducted girls on the authorities’ current efforts to ensure their safe release.
“The families – and the abducted girls, once they are freed – must be provided with adequate medical and psychological support,” it said.
The National Security Adviser, Mr. Sambo Dasuki, the Chief of Defence Staff, Air Marshal Alex Badeh, the Service Chiefs and the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar had on Thursday visited Chibok on a fact-finding mission.
But no member of the delegation spoke on what happened on the night of April 14 before Boko Haram invaded Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok.
The Defence Headquarters yesterday denied that the military had  advance warning on the invasion of Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok where 276 girls were abducted.
It said patrolling troops only received information of an ongoing attack on Chibok and calked for reinforcement from Maiduguri , about 120kilometres away.
It described the findings of Amnesty International as false and unfounded.
The Director Defence Information/Coordinator, Maj-Gen. Chris Olukolade,  who made the clarifications in a statement in Abuja warned against campaigns which could  portray the military in bad light and cause disaffection.
Dismissing the allegation as  very unfortunate and untrue,Olukolade said:“Much as the Nigerian military appreciates the global concern and show of solidarity with the country at this trying moments, falsehood should not be introduced as a means of assessing the situation. 
“It has to be categorically stated that the claims by Amnesty International in its report that security forces had advance warning about the abduction of students of Government Secondary School Chibok, Borno State by terrorists is unfounded.
“Contrary to the organization’s claims, troops in Maiduguri did not receive four hours forewarning about the attacks. 
“Rather, they received information of an ongoing attack on Chibok community from troops on patrol who on noting the attack engaged the terrorists and called for more reinforcement to contain them.”
The DHQ gave  an insight into efforts made to reinforce troops in Chibok.
 “As the troops on reinforcement traversed the over 120km rugged and tortuous road from Maiduguri to Chibok, they ran into an ambush by terrorists who engaged them in fierce firefight and a number of soldiers lost their lives.
“Another set of soldiers also mobilized for the mission arrived after the terrorists had escaped due to a series of misleading information that slowed down the pursuit.
“It must therefore be clearly stated that contrary to the claim by the Amnesty International, the information received by troops at the Division Headquarters in Maiduguri was not a forewarning but the call for reinforcement by troops on patrol.  “Considering the vastness of the mission area, deployment has been more of patrols than static.”
The DHQ said troops were never at any time afraid of confronting Boko Haram insurgents.
The statement said: “The imputation of cowardice on the part of troops is particularly confounding as the military has internal mechanism to deal with such tendencies. 
“These spurious allegations are obviously a continuation of the campaign intended to cause disaffection, portray the military in bad light and undermine the counter-terrorism efforts.
“Although the Chibok incident is still subject to more investigation, the Defence Headquarters appeals to individuals and organizations to refrain from circulating spurious allegations that could undermine both the operation and investigation of conduct of the mission generally.”

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