Sahara Reporters Latest News Today Friday 9th October 2020

Sahara Reporters Latest News Today Friday 9th October 2020

Sahara Reporters Latest News Today and headlines on some of the happenings and news trend in the Country, today 09/10/20

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BREAKING: EFCC Bows To Pressure From Top Politicians, Releases Obasa On Bail Hours After Grilling

Lagos Assembly Speaker Mudashiru Obasa

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has bowed to pressure from some powerful politicians in Nigeria to release Mudashiru Obasa, Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly on bail.
Obasa was released after honouring an invitation by the EFCC on Thursday morning where he was grilled for hours.

Lagos Assembly Speaker Mudashiru Obasa

SaharaReporters gathered that top politicians in Lagos and at the federal levels pressured the EFCC to release him late on Thursday night.

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BREAKING: Lagos Assembly Speaker, Obasa, In EFCC Office Over Misappropriation Of Public Funds

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13 Hours Ago

Following his release, Obasa summoned an emergency plenary sitting of all members of the state Assembly.
He ordered the Deputy Majority Leader to summon an emergency meeting for Friday (today) just to prove that he wasn’t detained overnight.
Messages were sent to members of the Assembly of the emergency meeting at about 11:30pm on Thursday.
The Assembly had initially adjourned sitting until next week Monday after its session on Wednesday over fears that Obasa might be detained beyond Thursday.
Insider sources told SaharaRepoters that the case of embezzlement against the Lagos Assembly Speaker will take “very interesting shape” in the coming days especially after confessions of financial misappropriation by some members of the parliament.

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BREAKING: Lagos Assembly Speaker, Obasa, Denied Bail By EFCC, To Spend Night At Commission’s Office

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3 Hours Ago

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#ENDSARS: Protesters Raise The Alarm Over Plot By Police Officers To Kill Them

Nigerian youth protesting extrajudicial activities by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the police have raised the alarm by the Lagos State Police Command to kill them.
The protesters, who are embarking on a three-day demonstration, stormed the Lagos State Assembly on Thursday afternoon.

The protest, which started on Wednesday, saw protesters spend the night at the Lagos State Police Command.
The protesters, however, raised the alarm that the police were harassing and planning to kill them before daybreak.
One of the organisers of the protest in a tweet said the police towed their cars and were trying to dislodge them.
“I was wrong! The police led by CP Odumosu just towed away our cars and are trying to dislodge us! Start tweeting! If we die tonight, we died for a worthless nation!
“The police are here. They want to kill us,” @SavvyRinu tweeted.The Police are here.They want to kill us!Start tweeting!#EndSarsProtests mdash; Rinu #EndSARS🔥🔫 (@SavvyRinu) October 8, 2020

The protest was to push for the disbandment of SARS, a dreaded unit of the Nigeria Police Force.
Hip-hop musicians, Runtown, Falz and Jaywon also led a protest in Lagos while activists stormed the Force Headquarters, Abuja, to demand the immediate scrapping of SARS.
mdash; Rinu #EndSARS🔥🔫 (@SavvyRinu) October 8, 2020

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Ondo Residents Join Protest Calling For Scrapping Of SARS

Concerned residents of Ondo State have joined the nationwide protest to demand the total scrapping of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the Nigeria Police Force. 
The protesters stormed the streets of Ore in Odigbo Local Government Area of the state to express their feelings.

They condemned how SARS operatives had been killing, extorting and violating the rights of innocent Nigerian youth. 

One of the protesters, who identified himself only as Abiodun, said that the activities of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad should be condemned by all Nigerians. 

“We decided to join the protest to agitate for the total banning of SARS. 
“The police unit is a total disgrace to our security and many of them are made up of criminals, who always trample on the rights of innocent citizens. 
“We want a total end to their activities and would continue to join the struggle for EndSARS.”

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BREAKING: Lagos Assembly Speaker, Obasa, Denied Bail By EFCC, To Spend Night At Commission’s Office

Lagos Assembly Speaker Mudashiru Obasa

Speaker of Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa, has been denied bail by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission after he was invited for questioning earlier on Thursday.
SaharaReporters had on Wednesday reported that Obasa and some top accounting officials in the Lagos Assembly were invited by the EFCC for questioning.

Lagos Assembly Speaker Mudashiru Obasa

Obasa honoured the invitation at about 10:00am on Thursday and was grilled for many hours by top officials of the anti-graft agency.
Against his expectations, he was denied bail by the EFCC, forcing him to be kept for the night at the commission’s office.

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EXCLUSIVE: How Obasa’s Wife Receives N10m Illegal Monthly Allocation From Lagos Assembly

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SaharaReporters gathered that Obasa’s wife, accused of collecting N10m monthly allowance from the Assembly’s coffers, was invited earlier in the week by the EFCC and was granted bail after hours of grilling.
Upon her release, she was said to have accused wives of other lawmakers in the Lagos Assembly of abandoning her in such period of crisis despite also enjoying from the free disbursement of public funds by her husband.
Recall that SaharaRepoters had earlier reported that the EFCC obtained a court order granting the temporary forfeiture of three bank accounts belonging to Obasa.

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EXCLUSIVE: EFCC Secures Court Order To Freeze Three Bank Accounts Belonging To Lagos Assembly Speaker, Obasa

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7 Hours Ago

The court order was obtained from the Federal High Court, Lagos, on September 15, 2020.
The bank accounts are to be frozen pending an investigation by the EFCC.
The three bank accounts frozen are domiciled in Standard Chartered Bank under the name Mudashiru Ajayi Obasa.
In obtaining the ex-parte order, the EFCC said that the bank accounts were being investigated for conspiracy, diversion of funds, abuse of office and money laundering.
SaharaReporters had in series of reports detailed how Obasa had engaged in looting of public funds since he became Speaker of the Assembly.
The online news publication revealed how he operated over 64 bank accounts using different names to steal public funds.
EXPOSED: 64 Bank Accounts Linked To BVN Of Lagos Assembly Speaker, @Mudashiru_Obasa | Sahara Reporters SaharaReporters discovered that the accounts registered with various names, are being used to siphon public funds in Lagos. #ObasaGate READ MORE: pic.twitter.com/N8qU8TzioQ— Sahara Reporters (@SaharaReporters) May 23, 2020

To conceal his identity, the Speaker changed his name and date of birth in some of the accounts.
Aside from using Ajayi Mudashiru Obasa, he also used Obasa Abdulrahman Gbadunola and Gabriel Adedoyin Savage to register some of the bank accounts.
SaharaReporters also exposed how Obasa awarded contracts to himself using different companies owned by him and how he got the Assembly to approve N258m for the printing of invitation cards for the inauguration of lawmakers two months after the event held.
#PressPlay: “Money Is For Spending,†Says Lagos Speaker, @Mudashiru_Obasa, In Response To Corruption Allegations WATCH FULL VIDEO: pic.twitter.com/UBu139OY5O— Sahara Reporters (@SaharaReporters) May 24, 2020

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Nigerian Senate Asks President Buhari To Scrap Redundant Federal Agencies

Ahmed Lawan

The Nigerian Senate has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to implement the Economic Sustainability Plan so as to strengthen the economy in view of the resultant impact occasioned by COVID-19 pandemic.
President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, gave the charge on Thursday in a welcome address delivered during the presentation of the 2021 budget estimate by President Buhari at a joint session of the National Assembly.

Ahmed Lawan

According to Lawan, there was the urgent need by the government to sustain programmes aimed at economic diversification, not only because of the unpredictable nature of oil revenue but due to recent uncertainties arising from the Coronavirus outbreak.
He added that sufficient injection of funds into such programmes would give a boost to the nation’s economy.
Lawan said, “The implementation of the 2020 budget has shown a remarkable improvement over the previous years. 
“Certainly, the injection of funds for the various programmes and projects had helped our economy. We expect that before the end of this fiscal year, the 2020 budget would have been implemented 100 per cent. This will be a historic feat.
“The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is a global affliction that every country needs to address through various measures. The National Assembly approved the Nigerian Economic Sustainability Plan, a plan of the Federal Government to address the economic challenges of today.
“All efforts should be made to implement the plan, as a number of schemes are designed to keep our micro, small and medium enterprises afloat. 
“Mr President, it is our hope that the 2021 budget will be targeted at consolidation of gains made by the 2020 budget. The 2020 budget was targeted at sustaining growth and jobs. We need to not only protect jobs but create more.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed the ultimate vulnerability of our economy, as a monolithic, oil dependent economy. The sudden crash in the price of crude in the world market, and the consequent impact on our economy, should spur us into genuine search for the diversification of our economy, for other revenue sources.”
The Senate President while pledging the National Assembly’s readiness to pass the 2021 budget before the end of the year, said doing so “will continue to enable planning and enhance productivity and efficiency in the management and application of our resources”.
He, however, lamented that the Nigerian Government had resorted to borrowing to fund critical projects in the budget due to inadequate revenue at its disposal.
Lawan blamed government’s low revenue profile owing to leakages on the inefficiency of revenue generating agencies.
“Mr President, as our revenues plummeted, we have resorted to borrowing to fund the development of some critical infrastructure.
“Our revenue generation, collection and remittances need to be critically examined. Recent interactions between our committees on finance and national planning and economic matters, with over 200 revenue generating and collection agencies have revealed so much inefficiencies in their systems.
“It was revealed that government loses so much money as a result. Similarly, there are so much leakages of moneys that could have easily been available for national development.
“Due to inadequate revenue, government has to borrow in order to finance its projects. It is equally important that we should diversify our sources of funding of our programmes and projects. We need to encourage and promote more private sector participation in developing some of our physical infrastructure.
“We could explore the Public Private Partnership, Build Operate Transfer, and many other funding options. This is with a view to reducing our level of borrowing,” he added.

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Nigerian Government Condemns Killing Of Citizen In Libya

Abike Dabiri-Erewa

The Nigerian Government has condemned the killing of a Nigerian migrant worker in Tripoli, Libya.
SaharaReporters had reported that the yet to be identified Nigerian was burnt to death on Tuesday when three Libyans stormed a factory in the Tripoli neighborhood of Tajoura where African migrants were working.

Abike Dabiri-Erewa

It was learnt that they poured petrol on him and set him on fire but the reason for the crime had not been revealed.
Reacting in a statement on Thursday,  Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, condemned the act.
The statement reads, “The NIDCOM describes the act as dastardly, bestial and unacceptable. We call on the Libyan authorities to apply the full weight of the law on the suspected killers.”
Meanwhile, a statement by the Libyan Interior Ministry has condemned the act, insisting that it was a new wave of violence on migrants in North Africa.
The United Nations has also described the killing of the Nigerian man as “another senseless crime against migrants in the country”.

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For Daring Us, We Will Launch Radio Biafra In Daura, IPOB Tells Buhari

The Indigenous People of Biafra has dared President Muhammadu Buhari to stop them from launching Radio Biafra in Daura, his hometown.
The Nigerian Government had on Wednesday approved N654m for the deployment of hybrid spectrum monitoring system that would target illegal frequencies in the Southern part of the country especially, the South-East.
According to the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Pantami, his ministry has uncovered 320 frequencies being used all over the country out of which 106 were illegal.

IPOB in a statement by its Publicity Secretary, Emma Powerful, said, “The  attention of the global movement of the Indigenous People of Biafra ably led by our great leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, has been drawn to the approval of N654m by the Federal Government of Nigeria to monitor and crash Radio Biafra  frequencies in the country particularly in South-East and South-South geopolitical zones.
“This wicked but futile decision was taken during their Federal Executive Council meeting held Wednesday, 7th of October 2020.
“That the Federal Government of Nigeria headed by President Muhammadu Buhari mapped out such a whopping amount of money for this unreasonable project despite its precarious economic state only confirms it’s jittery over the name IPOB. We thought they said we are miscreants?  How come they are now losing sleep over miscreants?

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Compliance With Sit-at-home Order Shows Citizens No Longer Interested In One Nigeria –IPOB

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“The Nigerian Government and its agents have spent more than this amount in the past and nothing came out of it. We are expecting them to approve more money for the fight because they must understand that they will try but cannot withstand IPOB and its leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu. Such attempts in the past amounted to efforts in futility, and this time, they will fail again.
“In fact to prove to them how formidable we are, within six weeks from now, IPOB will launch Radio Biafra in Daura, the hometown of Buhari who presided over the FEC that took this foolish decision. Any time he vists Daura along with Aisha, they will receive Radio Biafra frequency and listen to the gospel of freedom by our leader, Nnamdi Kanu. Then he will know that the cabal, their sponsors and slaves are no match to indefatigable IPOB.
“In case they are unaware, Radio Biafra is not only received in Biafraland but in various parts of Nigeria. It is also the choice radio station of millions of audience in over 100 countries of the world. We are well ahead of Nigeria, and it’s far too late to stop Biafra.”

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Aviation Minister, Sirika, Accused Of Withholding Staff Salaries To Fulfill Governorship Ambition, Union Threatens Strike Action

Hadi Sirika

Top aviation sources have revealed to SaharaRepoters that Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, was deliberately holding on to workers’ salaries and allowances in a bid to raise enough money to contest the next governorship election in Katsina State.
It was also gathered that the minister in a bid to raise funds needed to realise his ambition, was doing all he can to sell the country’s airports.
He is said to be working hard to prove that government could no longer manage the facilities just so he can auction them off and raise some money for his governorship ambition.

Aviation Minister, Hadi Sirika.

He is said to be keen on selling the four major airports in Nigeria — Lagos, Abuja, Kano and Port Harcourt.
Sirika has also been accused of using his cronies to head agencies like Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria, National Airport Management Authority, Accident Investigation Bureau, and Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority.
The minister is believed to be raising money illicitly through these agencies to fulfill his governorship ambition in Katsina State.
Despite owing salaries, the minister has just recruited 280 more staff into FAAN, who are all from the Northern part of the country, it was gathered.
About 26 of them have been posted to Lagos international airport and have started documentation without taking any tests as normal employment procedure demands.

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COVID-19: FAAN Announces Reduction In Staff Salary From May

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EXCLUSIVE: Nigeria’s Airport Authority Pays Staff Half Salary After Top Officials, Children Stole Over N750m In Fraudulent Contract Scheme | Sahara Reporters pic.twitter.com/JgXnr9ObOK— Sahara Reporters (@SaharaReporters) July 30, 2020

Angered by this and other issues affecting their welfare, aviation workers under the platforms of National Union Of Air Transport Employees, Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association Of Nigeria, And Association Of Nigeria Aviation Professional, in a letter addressed to the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, Murtala Muhammed Airport, Ikeja, Lagos, said that they would embark on immediate strike action if their demands were not met.
“Due to continuing unilateral actions by the management of FAAN resulting in ever increasing delays and staggering of salaries payments which has become unbearable, our unions have decided that the situation can no longer be tolerated due to the uncontrollable damage to workers welfare and smooth operation of FAAN.
“Accordingly, management is hereby notified that if within seven days from the date of the notice all shortfalls in salary payments are not fully rectified and settled, our unions will commence an indefinite industrial action against the authority,” the letter partly reads.

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Again, Police Attack #FreeZakzaky Protesters In Abuja

Determined to silence their agitation, police officers in Abuja have again launched a violent attack on members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria popularly known as Shiites, during a protest to demand the freedom of their leader, Sheik Ibrahim El-Zakzaky and wife, Zeenat.
The police attacked the peaceful and unarmed protesters using teargas and water cannons to suppress their demands for the freedom of El-Zakzaky, who has been in detention since December 2015.

Secretary of the Academic Forum of the movement, Abdullahi Musa, confirmed the attack while speaking with SaharaReporters.
He said members of the group were commemorating the Arba’een symbolic trek, which ends with a march to demand the freedom of El-Zakzaky when the police swooped on them.
He said after the police took over venue of the protest, the IMN members moved to another venue to hold the demonstration but the law enforcement agents followed, attacked and arrested many of them.
Musa said, “We are commemorating the Arba’een symbolic trek which started yesterday and supposed to end today with massive free El-Zakzaky protest within the city but unfortunately the police arrived earlier at the scene where the protest was to start.
“They occupied the area in Wuse Market and arrested so many innocent passers-by while the protesters moved to Utako Market in Utako District of Abuja.
“The protest started peacefully but at Berger Bridge the police launched the attack without any provocation by the demonstators.
“After the attack, we moved to Federal Secretariat and protested and it ended peacefully as the police were busy arresting innocent people around Wuse, Berger and Utako”
The IMN vowed not to be intimidated by the actions of the police until El-Zakzaky was freed.
“We call for the unconditional release of our leader Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky and his wife Zeenah.
“We will continue to protest no matter the attack and arrest by the authorities until the sheikh, his wife and others in detention since December 2015 are set free,” he added.
Many members of the IMN have been arrested and killed by police during peaceful protests.
On January 21 this year, while attacking protesters, the police killed a journalist with Regent Africa Times, Alex Ogbu, in Abuja.

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EXCLUSIVE: EFCC Secures Court Order To Freeze Three Bank Accounts Belonging To Lagos Assembly Speaker, Obasa

Lagos Assembly Speaker Mudashiru Obasa

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has obtained a court order granting the temporary forfeiture of three bank accounts belonging to Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa.
The court order was obtained from the Federal High Court, Lagos, on September 15, 2020.

Lagos Assembly Speaker Mudashiru Obasa

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BREAKING: Lagos Assembly Speaker, Obasa, In EFCC Office Over Misappropriation Of Public Funds

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The bank accounts are to be frozen pending an investigation by the EFCC.
The three bank accounts frozen are domiciled in Standard Chartered Bank under the name Mudashiru Ajayi Obasa.
In obtaining the ex-parte order, the EFCC said the bank accounts are being investigated for conspiracy, diversion of funds, abuse of office and money laundering.
DOCUMENT: EFCC Secures Court Order to Freeze Three Bank Accounts Belonging to Lagos Assembly Speaker, Obasa… by Sahara Reporters on Scribd

SaharaReporters had exclusively published series of reports highlighting how Obasa embezzled millions of public funds in flagrant abuse of office.
Some of the reports revealed how he operates over 64 bank accounts using different names to conceal his identity.
EXPOSED: 64 Bank Accounts Linked To BVN Of Lagos Assembly Speaker, @Mudashiru_Obasa | Sahara Reporters SaharaReporters discovered that the accounts registered with various names, are being used to siphon public funds in Lagos. #ObasaGate READ MORE: pic.twitter.com/N8qU8TzioQ— Sahara Reporters (@SaharaReporters) May 23, 2020

Aside from using Ajayi Mudashiru Obasa, he also used Obasa Abdulrahman Gbadunola and Gabriel Adedoyin Savage to register some of the bank accounts.
After months of reporting and investigation by SaharaReporters, Obasa was invited by the EFCC for questioning.
Some of his allies, who are involved in the grand corruption, have also been grilled by the anti-graft agency and they confessed to the act, promising to refund some of the stolen funds.
Obasa, who is a stooge of ex-Lagos governor, Bola Tinubu, arrived at EFCC’s office at about 10:00am on Thursday for questioning by officials of the anti-graft agency.
#PressPlay: “Money Is For Spending,†Says Lagos Speaker, @Mudashiru_Obasa, In Response To Corruption Allegations WATCH FULL VIDEO: pic.twitter.com/UBu139OY5O— Sahara Reporters (@SaharaReporters) May 24, 2020

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