Sahara Reporters Latest News Friday 11th January 2019

Sahara Reporters Latest News Friday 11th January 2019

Sahara Reporters Latest News Today and headlines on some of the happenings and news trend in the Country, today 11/01/19

Read also Leadership Newspapers News Today Friday 11th January 2019

target=_blank>POLL: Will You Accept Money Before Voting At The 2019 Elections?

How do you intend to treat politicians who offer you cash in exchange for votes during the 2019 general election?
1. Will you collect money and vote for the candidate who pays the highest?
2. Will you collect money but vote only according to your conscience?
3. Will you reject money no matter how much?
Please let us know.

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target=_blank>Remi Tinubu’s Office Burgled

The office of Lagos Central senator Remi Tinubu, at the National assembly, has been burgled.
Nifemi Aje, Tinubu’s aide, said on Thursday that the incident was discovered on Wednesday when staff resumed the day’s work.
He said the burglars destroyed the CCTV and carted away some important items, adding that the incident had been reported to the National Assembly Police.
“Items removed include an HP laptop computer, Smile internet device, machine box attached to CCTV HP screen and some copies of Laws of the federation,” Aje said.
“Traces of footsteps were discovered on the office rug. The wall cabinet was left disorganised.
“A report of the incident has already been lodged at the Police Post at the National Assembly and we are assured that the investigation has commenced into the matter.
“We do not know those who perpetrated the burglary or those who sponsored them. We are, however, waiting for the outcome of police investigation into the matter.”

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target=_blank>APC-Led Coalition Joins Conspiracy To Exclude Sowore From Presidential Debate

The African Action Congress (AAC), the political party of presidential candidate Omoyele Sowore, has fingered the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the ongoing plot to exclude its candidate from the presidential debate organised by the Nigeria Elections Debate Group (NEDG) and the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria (BON).
According to the party, the United Party of Nigeria (UPN), which is a member of the APC-led Coalition of Progressives Political Parties (CPPP), is set to file a motion at the Federal Capital Territory High Court in Abuja seeking to be joined as a party in the Sowore suit.
AAC said the aim of UPN’s suit is to throw impediments in the way of a timely ruling on the case, so that there will be no resolution before January 19, when the debate will hold.
“The African Action Congress and the Sowore 2019 Campaign has been notified of a plot to use frivolous law suits as a salt tactic to prevent a timely ruling on the case instituted by our party for the inclusion of Omoyele Sowore, the presidential candidate of the party, in the January 19th NEDG/BON 2019 debate,” read a statement released on Thursday by Dr Malcolm Fabiyi, Director-General of the Sowore 2019 Campaign.
“We have made it clear to Nigerians that we believe that our party’s exclusion from that debate was orchestrated by the ruling party. Now, in a fit of desperation, the masquerades have been forced to take off their masks. 
“We have it on good authority that the UPN, a member of the APC led Coalition of Progressives Political Parties (CPPP), will file a motion at the Federal Capital Territory High Court in Abuja seeking to be joined as a party in the suit which was filed in December 2018 by the National Legal Adviser of the AAC, Inibehe Effiong.
“UPN will, in its motion, ask that its presidential candidate, one Alhaji Ahmed Sakil, also be allowed to participate in the January 19, 2019 presidential debate organised by the NEDG and BON. 
“Nigerians will recall that the CPPP openly declared support for the re-election of Buhari after a meeting at the Transcorp Hilton, Abuja in July 2018. How then can a candidate from one of the coalition partners of the CPPP be filing a suit to be included in a debate which their adopted candidate, President Buhari, will be participating in? 
“Concerned by the obvious progress that our case is making in the judicial system, the APC/CPPP coalition is now resorting to desperate measures in their attempt to prevent the most authentic voice for the New Nigeria that we are all yearning for, to be a part of the debate about its future. The legal strategy that the APC-CPPP-UPN team is banking on is one of delay. The goal, as we have reliably learned is to throw impediments in the way of a timely ruling on the case, so that there will be no resolution before January 19th, when the debate will hold.”
Fabiyi asked Nigerians to ask themselves the following questions: Why would UPN, a political party that has publicly endorsed the ruling APC, suddenly seek to be joined as a party in the case just few days to the debate? Why did the UPN not file its own case to demand inclusion in the debate but had to wait till a few days to the presidential election debate before seeking to be joined in the AAC’s case?
“They are afraid. But what is the APC afraid of? Why is there such an obvious fear of allowing the participation of Omoyele Sowore in the presidential debate? What does the ruling establishment have to hide? We know they do not want us to reveal to Nigerians that the Next Level that they are seeking, is a worse level of depravity, ineptitude, nepotism and corruption,” he added.
“They are afraid that what they tell themselves behind closed doors, as Nigerians learned from the revealing confessions that Amaechi made about Buhari and the APC’s views about Nigeria, will be openly exposed to the Nigerian people, on prime time TV.
“Our concerns are being validated and confirmed. Our party’s selection as only one of four political parties in Nigeria selected for the MacArthur Foundation sponsored Town Hall series is further evidence that the NEDG and BON working in concert with others rigged the AAC out of the debate. The MacArthur foundation is one of the most respected organizations in the world. Their selection process mirrored in many parts the process that NEDG and BON claimed to follow, yet the outcomes were different. We reiterate that even the process that the NEDG, BON and Channels TV used returned the AAC as one of the top three parties in Nigeria. To those who seek to exclude us we say: truth can never be silenced. We will prevail!!”

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target=_blank>EXCLUSIVE: How Nigerian Soldier Killed More Than 14 Boko Haram Insurgents Before He Was Gunned Down

Boko Haram insurgents may have been gaining ground recently in their onslaughts against the Nigerian Military, but the deaths of soldiers in battle are usually laden with untold stories of the heroics of Nigerian troops.
As Saharareporters has now found out from a firsthand witness, when Boko Haram raided the Army’s base in Monguno, Borno State, in the last week of 2018, the soldier who was killed, lost his life in the most heroic of circumstances — and not until he had killed at least 14 Boko Haram insurgents.
“We were on ground when Boko Haram surprised us with a strike,” a soldier who escaped the attack unhurt told SaharaReporters on Thursday. 
“The first thing we did was to run for cover. We ran until we arrived a location fenced with transparent barbed wire. The place was locked.” 
The soldier driving the vehicle disembarked and fired at the padlock, paving the way for others to charge through the gate and run until they got to a parapet — “a straight, deep hole that you can take cover in” — where the assailants were hiding in their dozens.
“The Boko Haram insurgents were hiding inside,” said the soldier.
“That was how the driver came down from his own vehicle, collected his rifle, jumped into the parapet and started shooting those guys inside the insurgents.
“He killed more than 14 Boko Haram insurgents before he died — more than 14. He was killing them and advancing. But there was one insurgent that he shot and thought had died; it was that one who eventually managed to shoot him in the back as he was advancing, otherwise he would have killed many more. He killed many of them already, more than 14.”
Only one soldier — that driver — died in that attack, while another was injured. But in an attack the same week when insurgents overtook Baga, killing many soldiers, with some 700 more missing, the story was entirely different.

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EXCLUSIVE: ‘About 700 Soldiers Missing, More Than 2,000 Trapped’ As Boko Haram Takes Over Baga

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“Nobody stood to fight. People ran away — because Boko Haram came with enough weapons. Those guys were holding good weapons. All those things that the Army says about weapons are fake; they are lying. They don’t have what Boko Haram has,” the soldier added.
“You cannot compare yourself holding a blunt knife and trying to fight someone with a sharp cutlass. Imagine, your knife is not long; and it’s not sharp. Now, your opponent has a long and sharp cutlass. The person will surely defeat you. 
“So, that is the problem we’re facing; we don’t have weapons. Look at Baga, Boko Haram collected it from the Army. The most painful thing is that the brigade there had a guard room where both soldiers and Boko Haram were locked. When Boko Haram chased everyone away, they opened the guard room. What do you think they would have done to the soldiers in that guardroom? Kill them, of course!”

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target=_blank>Bayelsa Assembly Speaker, Deputy, Accountants Accused Of Embezzling N1billion

There is rising tension in the Bayelsa State House of Assembly over a petition filed before the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) by the member representing Brass Constituency 1, Hon. Isreal Sunny-Goli, against the Speaker, Hon. Kombowei Benson (pictured middle, with Dickson), the Clerk of the House, Mr. Aaron Timiye (pictured left) and two other accountants over alleged diversion and embezzlement of over a billion naira in allowances, constituency tour and office maintenance allowances in the last four years.
Sunny-Goli stated in the petition that although he endured the show of disdain to his office as an Assembly member and his constituent in Brass Constituency 1 by the Speaker on the direct orders of the State Governor, Hon. Seriake Dickson, the alleged diversion of his allowances started from 2015 and has continued till date.
He condemned the grand conspiracy by the Speaker, Clerk, Head of Account Department, Mr. Koroye Stephen and Former HOD, Accounts, Mr. Thompson Tamaradubo, to intimidate him and deprive him of his legitimate financial benefits from the Assembly, and further perpetrate largescale financial fraud on the funds belonging to the Assembly.
According to the petition, signed by his legal counsel, Ochu Chukwuma, Esq.: It is also very pertinent to state that from 2015 till date the Speaker of the House of Assembly and his co-travellers in the disastrous financial misadventure have refused to pay our client his furniture allowance but have appropriated the same for themselves.
“Sometime in 2016, our client was deliberately left out of an approved trip for all members of the House of Assembly to attend the Commonwealth Parliamentary Assembly in Mauritius. While every member of the Assembly was paid, our client was refused payment and consequently the trip. The approved money was taking, withdrawn and spent by the persons mentioned.”
“Sir, it is of paramount importance to state that the approved sum of money for member’s constituency tour during the annual assembly recess, which money is usually paid to members’ salaries account, have never been paid to our client. This money was paid to other members from the Assembly Sterling bank account and that of our client has been embezzled jointly by the afore-mentioned persons. While in June, 2018 the approved N8,000,000.00 (Eight Million Naira) only usually paid as constituency Office Maintenance Allowance to members were transferred from the Assembly Sterling Bank Account to the Assembly Zenith Bank Account and paid to all the other members’ salaries account except that of our Client.”
“Most worrisome sir, within this month of August, 2018 our client was paid the sum of N10,000,000,00 (Ten Million Naira) only as Constituency Tour Allowance for the annual assembly recess. This money was consequently and surreptitiously reversed from our clients salary account on the request of the Accountant acting supposedly on the orders of the Speaker of the Assembly. These acts and many more have been going on in the Assembly from inception and our client have drawn the attention of the Speaker to the anomalies but the same and all efforts by our client have been rebuffed without remedy, the Speaker citing ‘Order from above’ as excuse.
“Let it be stressed that the Assembly is an arm of Government with its operations distinct and separate from the other arms of government hence, it will be ridiculous for the perpetrators of this financial fraud to cite ‘Order from above’ as an excuse. It has become very urgent to checkmate this untoward financial recklessness being perpetrated against our client on one hand and the funds of the Assembly on the other hand hence this petition against the principal actors. You are, therefore, invited to use your good offices to properly investigate this matter with a view to bringing the perpetrators to justice.”
Several attempts to get the reaction of the Speaker proved difficult as his Media Aide, Mr. Aotendeike Boloigha, pleaded on Tuesday for 48 hours to allow his principal respond to the allegation. 
“I have just spoken with my principal, the Speaker, can you kindly just hold on a bit till tomorrow so we can conclude on the petition?” Aotendeike Boloigha said. Seventy-two hours later, teh Speaker’s reaction is still being awaited.
Other sources within the state assembly told our correspondent that the Speaker is seeking an audience with Governor Dickson in order to ensure his response to the petition is not misconstrued.

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E2%80%98redefine-public-transportation%E2%80%99-ambode-injects-820-buses-lagos target=_blank>To ‘Redefine Public Transportation’, Ambode Injects 820 Buses Into Lagos

Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, on Wednesday said plans have been firmed up to roll out the Bus Reform Project of the state government in March with 820 high and medium capacity buses.
According to the Governor, the initiative would “redefine public transportation and make the state globally competitive”.   
Speaking during an extensive inspection tour of ongoing projects across the state, which lasted from morning till late in the night, Ambode said the initiative was basically designed to inject 5,000 buses, modern terminals, facilitate ease of mobility for residents and also rev up the Lagos economy, among others.
While inspecting the assembling plant at Awoyaya in Ibeju Lekki area of the state, which is also serving as the temporary holding bay for 500 out of the 820 buses, he expressed optimism that the buses would be rolled out after the elections, while the next phase of the project would be to assemble the buses in Lagos.
“This is an assembling plant. The dream is that beyond the procurement of 820 buses by government, the next set of buses in the vision should be assembled in Lagos in this assembling plant and another one in Epe,” he said.
“That is the dream and the whole project is scalable and in this scale right now, we would run with the 820; you have seen the maintenance workshops and all that, and then the next scale, which is the next phase, is for Nigerians to be able to assemble the buses in Lagos and then we create employment opportunities and also allow the GDP of Lagos to grow. The buses are ready and we think with everything we have done, we should be able to roll out these buses maybe immediately after the elections.”
Ambode explained that although the 5,000 buses would not be enough for the state, the government was showing good example and creating the conducive atmosphere to allow the private sector come in and participate in the whole arrangement.
“What has happened is that government has gone ahead to procure these buses using its funds and the buses are being owned by a government company called Lagos Bus Services Limited (LBSL). So, the LBSL will lease these buses to operators who would use the three depots at Oshodi, Anthony and Yaba to ensure that the buses are sustained and maintained properly so that they don’t get wasted before their lifespan expires,” he said.
“The idea is if we are able to show good example — and we have procured these buses with our own money — the private sector can join hands with us and start to procure those additional buses that will take it to 5,000, while government can also procure more and by so doing, we would have had assembling plant in Lagos and create job opportunities for our people.
“By the time you put these buses on the road, it will create jobs for drivers, engineers, technicians, and so on, thereby growing the economy of Lagos coming from the transport sector in addition to 100 bus stops being constructed simultaneously across the State with attendant positive impact on the economy. So, the idea is: create jobs, grow the economy, make the city globally competitive and then make life comfortable for the people.”The 820 buses, which have already been delivered, are equipped with cameras, USB point, internet, television, and special spaces for physically challenged, pregnant women and the aged, among others.

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target=_blank>End Of 22-Year Kabila Era In Congo As Opposition Candidate Wins Presidential Election

The electoral commission of the Democratic Republic of Congo has declared Felix Tshisekedi, the leader of the opposition party, winner of the country’s presidential election.
Announcing the result on Thursday, Corneille Nangaa, the President of the Commission Electorale Nationale Indépendante (CENI), told a news conference that Tshisekedi won with 38.57 per cent of more than 18 million ballots cast.
The presidential election, held in December 2018, has been rife with crisis, which led to a shutdown of internet services to forestall breakdown of law and order.
According to Reuters, the runner-up dismissed the result as an “electoral coup”.
The result will see to the transfer of power from a democratic government for the first time in Congo.
“Felix Tshisekedi Tshilombo is declared the provisionally-elected president of Democratic Republic of Congo,” Nangaa said while declaring the result at the CENI headquarters.
The announcement has elicited mixed reactions.
In his remarks to his supporters at his campaign headquarters, Tshisekedi referred to current President Joseph Kabila, as “an important political partner”, and expressed his determination to see to true development for the people of Congo.
Kabila became president in 2001, 10 days after the assassination of his father, Laurent-Désiré Kabila, who had himself been President since 1997. 
After succeeding his father, Kabila was elected President in 2006, and re-elected for a second term In 2011.
Also, if the result goes unchallenged, this would be Congo’s first democratic transition of power since gaining independence in 1960.

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E2%80%99s-diary-how-foreigners-sold-wizkid%E2%80%99s-%E2%80%98made-lagos%E2%80%99-concert-ticket-n4000-n1000 target=_blank>REPORTER’S DIARY: How Foreigners Sold Wizkid’s ‘Made in Lagos’ Concert Ticket Of N4,000 For N1,000

As an entertainment journalist, the job gets really busy in December, with a litany of music festivals, award shows, comedy events to cover. As early as October 2018, entertainers begin to roll out dates, venues and time of their concerts scheduled for December. So, it was a well-expected move on December 7 when Nigerian singer Ayodeji Ibrahim Balogun, better known as Wizkid, took to his Instagram handle to announce the date and venue of his two concerts: The Wizkid Exclusive VIP Experience at Eko Convention Centre on December 19, and the Made In Lagos Festival which was to hold at Eko Atlantic on December 23. 
I reached out to Xchange, organisers of the two events, in order to get press pass to this event. Our request was granted, we attended the Singers First event, which was held at Eko Convention Centre. On Saturday December 22, I placed a call to the Xchange team in order to get press pass for the singers’ Made In Lagos concerts which was going to hold on Sunday 23rd. The person on the line told me there was an event, ‘Afrobeat Fest’, holding at Eko Atlantic and there were press passes for us if we would like to cover the event. 
It should be recalled that Yemi Alade had tweeted: “Stop increasing your ynash in your pictures! You know you are straight like ‘I’ embrace your real self! Ahh ahh. Deceiving fans up and dan.” Few hours later, Tiwa Savage took to her Instagram page to post a series of pictures displaying her backside, which she captioned: “Flash Black Friday #ToWhomItMayF&ckingConcern” for the first photo and “Because I’m petty I get plenty more but make I no break your screen guard. Let sleeping dogs lie. A word is enough for the wise,” for the second photo. Fans did their one plus one and concluded that a very big celebrity fight was brewing. 
The zeal and desire to tell every story as a Journalist and probably the opportunity to get Yemi Alade’s reaction, as she was billed to perform at the event (Afrobeat Fest), made me want to cover the event. Later in the evening, I headed to Eko Atlantic, venue of the event. Upon arrival, I noticed how scanty the place looked and how lifeless it was for a music concert. If a census was taken, those present would hardly be 100. “Maybe it is the usual African time; people will come.” I said to myself as I tried to clear my doubt that an event was indeed going to take place that night. This was how I kept consoling myself till Ephraim, a friend of my colleague, joined me at the venue. His arrival brought more regrets rather than happiness, as he was even more convinced that no concert was going to hold that night.
In the midst of all this, as we walked away from the main arena, we bumped into a group of white foreigners who were very pissed off that an event reportedly slated for 7pm was yet to start by 11pm. Determined not to rant in vain, they walked to an usher to seek explanations. Wanting to see how this was going to end, I signalled Ephraim for him to wait while I observed the situation. After speaking with the ushers, who could not come up with concrete reason why an event billed to start by 7pm was yet to start by 11pm, the foreigners were directed by the ushers to speak with a superior official at the gate. Still visibly angry, they walked towards the gate in hope that they would get answers to all their questions. 
The following conversation ensued between the foreigners and some ticketing officials at the gate:
Foreigners: We arrived at 05 past 9; we’ve been waiting for three hours; three hours, nothing! You can cut our bands off (the pass that grants access into the venue, worn on the hand). We paid N5,000 to see Femi Kuti and then what we’ having is just… it’s not funny…..the lack of communication is so bad for social growth. 

Video of Reporters Diary: Scalpers Purchase Wizkid Concert Resale Tickets Below Face Value

Reporters Diary: Scalpers Purchase Wizkid Concert Resale Tickets Below Face Value

Officials: We apologise. 
Foreigners: Who do we speak to? Who is the manager that we can speak to?
Officials: Point towards a man not so far.
While this was going on, they approached the manager, whom they were directed to speak with. When they told him their grievances, all he did was to try to calm the angry foreigners while saying the usual customer care catchphrase: “We’re sorry for the inconvenience.” 
Having expressed all their anger with the organisers, the foreigners decided to leave the concert, totally pissed. I followed them behind as they made their way out of the venue.
As they made their way to the parking lot to retrieve their vehicles, their ‘fans’, including me, kept following them. Then I eavesdropped on someone saying in Yoruba: “They have tickets to Wizkid concerts that they want to sell.”
“How much?” I asked someone beside me, who was also probably trying to purchase the tickets. I wasn’t sure. “1k” the person replied. If there is anything Nigerians chase more than they chase their dreams. definitely it’s freebies. It was then it dawned on me that these people were on the foreigners trail not for money but for tickets. At that moment, I began to observe to see if truly the tickets were going to be sold for N1,000. Like wildfire, the ticket sale story went viral. Soon, prospective buyers began to approach the foreigners. Someone tried to negotiate for N500, but the foreigners declined the offer. They knew quite well how not to be stupid on the streets of Lagos.
The foreigners stood by the road as they awaited a potential buyer. Not that they were not getting offers, these offers were not juicy. Ephraim, my friend’s colleague, walked up to one of the foreigners to strike a deal. 
“How much?’ he asked. ”
“1k” he replied. 
“Really?” 
“Yes”
“Bring it let me see” 
“How many?”
“Two”
One foreigner signalled to one of his companions to bring two tickets. Not wanting to get detected by security officials patrolling the area, knowing that sale of tickets by unauthorised persons is illegal and regarded as ‘black market’, he stylishly hid the ticket, covering it with both hands while waiting for Ephraim to seal the deal. When Ephraim saw the tickets, he reached down to his pockets for his legal tender. Money exchanged hands, tickets exchanged owners, the deal was signed, sealed and delivered. Ephraim was not the only who bought the tickets, I also bought one. The foreigners ensured they sold all their tickets before leaving. 
This illegal trade would not have taken place if the event organisers kicked off the event at the scheduled time or intimated concert goers on why the concert was yet to start. Had the foreigners enjoyed their money’s worth, there would have been no need to sell their tickets. The Nigerian entertainment is a fast-growing industry but that growth must now extend to timeliness. No more African time, please!

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target=_blank>Why Yari Should Take His Empty Seat Home By Azu Ishiekwene

Zamfara State governor, Abdulaziz Yari, offered Greek gift as Christmas present: his soon-to-be-vacant official stool is not worth the paper on which he made the promise to step down as governor if doing so would bring peace to the state. There’s no need to give up his seat or to step down.
Out of the goodness of his purple heart, however, the governor, whose state now appears to be run officially by bandits, mostly illegitimate political children of former Governor Sani Yerima’s fanatical experiment nearly 20 years ago. The monsters have now come of age.
Yari said he was willing to make any personal sacrifice, including giving up his post as governor, if that might retrieve the state from the control of these bandits.
His stool, the governor said, is not worth the life of a single resident, much less the tens of hundreds who have been killed, wounded or dispossessed since the current escalation of deadly banditry in the state.
I had to wait for a few days to pass to be sure it was Yari speaking. Even after that, I only paid attention to reports carrying not only his speech but his photograph as well, just to be sure it was not another Yari.
But there he was, wearing his bleeding heart on his sleeve and speaking from Zamfara, of all places, where he had been a stranger for the better part of the last four years of his tenure.
I don’t know if he missed his way to Gusau, but surely, Yari, the undisputed runaway crown prince and executive governor-in-absentia, does not expect us to take his crocodile tears seriously. 
If he was crying privately, we might even have offered him buckets to collect his tears and then admonished him quietly for mockery. But to make a public show of his concern about the state of affairs in Zamfara, after all he has done horribly wrong, particularly in the last four years, is an insult the grieving people of the state could do without.
So, it’s OK for President Muhammadu Buhari to declare a state of emergency now, on the eve of Yari’s departure as governor? Around July last year, when it was very obvious that things were getting out of hand, LEADERSHIP newspaper wrote a frontpage editorial asking the President to declare a state of emergency in Zamfara.
The newspaper argued – and it was quite clearly the case – that bandits in Zamfara were killing for sport and that the governor, apart from accepting that he was only chief security officer in name, had also abandoned the state and camped in Abuja.
The newspaper said in that July editorial that, “The killings in the state are more than all the killings in all the other states of the country put together…Now that the Zamfara State government has failed in its duty – the state is effectively a failed state – we should stop pretending about it. If the governor who collects millions of naira as security vote and has a plethora of security men guarding him has fled the state, what is the point pretending that a normal intervention will end the banditry?”
In response to the editorial, the governor used part of his security vote, which if he couldn’t use to secure the State he could at least have used to provide succour, to abuse LEADERSHIP in acres of pages of sponsored advertisements. 
Five months later, the same governor sees the light and invites a long line of sympathisers to help wipe away his tears. 
Not so fast. It’s important to examine Yari’s real motive. I’m not ruling out the raging war by bandits as a reason, but Yari’s conduct shows that banditry is just a convenient mask for his loss of political influence within his party. He is offering his stool, not to save the state, but to spite his adversaries and purchase sympathy.
In coming to terms with the heavy defeat he suffered during the last governorship primary in the state at the hands of the Abuja forces led by Kabiru Marafa and Adams Oshiomhole, Yari is happy to cover his shame with whatever he can find, including a fig leaf of emergency rule.
All the pretence that he’s happy to step down now to save the state is nonsense. 
He can cry until the handkerchief factory closes down, his fake tears will not save him from answering questions about what exactly he did with the state’s security vote, at least in the last four years, when security mattered most. 
We have seen voodoo expense sheets in newspaper adverts claiming that Yari put up a braver fight against the bandits than Napoleon did at Waterloo, but to what effect? To what purpose?
The governor collects tens of millions of naira from Abuja monthly as security vote only for him to disappear and camp out outside Gusau until the next cash load is ready. Since when did his love for the people of Zamfara become more important than his personal safety and security? Since when did his commitment to serve become more important than his personal comfort?
Wasn’t this the same governor who instead of providing vaccines when meningitis broke out in Zamfara two years ago said the outbreak was punishment for widespread fornication? 
Apparently, the only punishment worse than meningitis was Yari’s election as governor. The offer of a virtually empty seat in Government House is not worth his redemption. Zamfara is not the only state under siege. Katsina State Governor, Bello Masari, has also cried out; while in the North East, Borno and Yobe have been in the eye of the storm for years now. 
In spite of the deadly attacks, which have increased dramatically in recent times, however, it is to Governor Kashim Ibrahim Shettima’s credit that he has stood firm with residents in Borno in the face of grave danger, offering succour and hope wherever he can under very difficult circumstances. That is what leadership demands.
Yari may complain that the present scale of violence in Zamfara is beyond what a state government can contain, however zealous it may be. He would be right, up to a point. I think that whatever cleaning up Buhari may have done in the military top hierarchy when he took over, the majority of the fighting forces are still being poorly served by deep-rooted corruption in the system.
Add that to the weak, deeply fragmented, failing neighbouring countries on our northern borders and you have a compounded problem.
But poor leadership in Zamfara, particularly in the last four years, has also made the state an attractive destination for bandits with a bloodline to the Yerima era. Yari’s will be remembered for his frequent and prolonged absences from the state and his faux pas over meningitis. He will also be remembered as one of the governors charged by EFCC for pocketing $3m of the Paris Club refund, which should have been used to pay salaries.
Each breach of faith by the governor – and they are in multiples – has only made the people of Zamfara more vulnerable, more insecure. The bandits have been a terrible plague; but Yari has been no less a predator.
Perhaps one thing he did well was holding the chair of the Governors’ Forum – a side hustle which neither requires presence of mind nor sustained effort. He can keep his seat as governor till the end; Zamfara will manage to survive him.
 
Ishiekwene is the Managing Director/Editor-In-Chief of The Interview and member of the board of the Global Editors Network

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JUST IN: Passengers Escape Through The Window As Train Derails In Lagos

A moving train has derailed in Agege, Lagos.
According to witnesses, the train left its course and ran into passers-by and traders.
The derailment was said to have been caused by the last two coaches, which witnesses said fell off the back of the train.
The incident has led to a traffic jam in Agege/Ikeja/old Abeokuta road axis.
Passengers trapped in the train had to escape through the window.
The figure of casualties was yet to be ascertained as of the time of filing this report.
Lagosians have pleaded with the Nigerian government to invest more in the rail transportation system in Nigeria, calling for an improvement in the railway that has been in existence since the early 60s.

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SaharaReporters, New York

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