BREAKING: ASUU Commences Nationwide Strike – MainNews.Blog

The Academic Staff Union Of Universities (ASUU) has commenced an indefinite strike. The strike is to protest the poor funding of Nigerian universities and alleged plan by the federal government to increase students fees and introduce an education bank.

Led by its National President, Biodun Ogunyemi, ASUU declared the strike at the end of its National Executive Council (NEC) meeting late on Sunday.

Weeks before the strike was announced, Mr Ogunyemi explained in an interview with PREMIUM TIMES why the lecturers were opposed to an education bank.
“The Nigerian government experimented with it for 7-8 years; it failed.

“So government had to set up a ministerial committee at the federal executive council to go and wind up the national education banking plan in 2001/2002, something they started in 1993. So for seven to eight years, the experiment failed.

did it fail? Government was not living up to its financial obligations towards the bank. There was widespread corruption, capacity of students to pay back the loan was not there, because there were no jobs and there are still no jobs.
“So you can imagine what will become of a bank that the loan equipment is not coming or is very low, the rate of payment is low or not coming. And we told them all of these but they went ahead to come up with the idea that well, we have calculated the cost of what we need to train an undergraduate and they have estimated that it will be N1 million that they will borrow from the bank. These students will borrow 1 million, but when they borrow, 70 per cent of it will be paid directly into the universities and 30 per cent will be given to students to maintain themselves. We smelt a rat. Why? Why are you insisting that students who do not have the capacity to pay should borrow and that this time around the money will not be given to them will be paid directly to universities irrespective of whether private or public,” the don said.

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Breaking: Release Buhari’s credentials to INEC, Fayose Spokesman writes chief of defence staff

Lere Olayinka, spokesman of Ayodele Fayose, former governor of Ekiti state, has asked the military to release the credentials of President Muhammadu Buhari to the Inedpendent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

Olayinka said this in an open letter to Abayomi Olonishakin, chief of defence staff.

While other presidential candidates submitted their credentials to INEC, Buhari told the commission that his were with the military.

Olayinka said failure to release the certificates of the president could have a negative effect on Buhari.

“I write as a concerned citizen of Nigeria to request that you use your good offices to effect the immediate release of academic credentials of Major General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd) to INEC,” the letter read.

“Major General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd) is the presidential candidate of the APC in the 2019 general election and he is in urgent need of the credentials to support his nomination as provided by the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).

“I wish to remind you that in 2015, the said Major General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd) could not present his credentials because the then PDP government of Dr. Goodluck Jonathan allegedly prevented the Military from releasing the credentials.

“The CDS sir, you should be reminded that the said Major General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd) is the President and Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces, and he could have just used his powers to compel the military authority to use a Fighter Jet to fly the credentials to INEC.

“Kindly treat this request as urgent because the said Major General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd) on whose behalf I make this request risks disqualification by INEC if he fails to submit the credentials as demanded by the law.”

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Ambode Thanks Tinubu, Party leaders, Says He Is Ready For The Primaries

Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode on Wednesday (September 26th) expressed his readiness to participate in Saturday’s Primary Election where members of the All Progressives Congress across the State are expected to choose the party’s flagbearer through direct primaries.

In a statement issued by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Kehinde Bamigbetan, the governor said he is restating his readiness in line with the choice of the party in Lagos State, and the validation given to the direct primary preference by the Governor’s Advisory Council (GAC).

“As our great party approaches Saturday, September 29, 2018, earmarked for the direct primary election to choose the candidate to fly our party’s gubernatorial flag at the next general election. I am happy to restate my commitment to participate in that process having procured and submitted my nomination form and having formally declared my intention to seek a second term to continue on the path of unprecedented growth and development that our State has witnessed since 2015”.

READ: Osun Rerun: Omisore Gives Conditions To Support PDP

The governor expressed profound gratitude to the national leader of the Party, Bola Tinubu; party elders and executives; GAC members; all APC members and every Lagosian “whose support, understanding and prayers have assisted me in no small measure in being used as an instrument through which our State has redefined the concept of greatness”.

The statement added that the governor, in seeking re-election, is approaching the founding fathers and teeming members of the party with a “grateful heart, open arms and a pledge to open and deeper attention to the concerns of this one, big family”.

It added that a return of the party’s ticket to Governor Ambode will guarantee the stability of the state’s growing economy; ensure the continuation of the growth and development it has witnessed over time and ensure that the opposition does not take root in the state.

The statement also congratulated the governor’s co-contestants for their courage and commitment to the party, and urged party faithful to come out en masse and vote peacefully in all the 20 Local Governments and 245 wards where the election will take place.

BREAKING: Court Orders Release Of Protesting IPOB Women, Strikes – MainNews.Blog

A Magistrate Court in Owere, Imo State, has ordered the release of over 100 women detained after a protest demanding the release of Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB.

The women were arrested on August 18 and detained following allegations of alleged treason and unlawful assembly among other offences.

There have been campaigns and demands for their release, especially on social media. Global rights group, Amnesty International, on Friday condemned the detention of the women protesters describing it as a violation of their rights.

In an interview on Friday, the lawyer representing the women, Sam Amadi, confirmed their release, saying they were let off following a directive of the Imo State director of public prosecution.

“Yes, they have been released. The DPP gave a directive for the case against them to be struck out, earlier today and we took it to the magistrate, along with the detained women. The court ordered the immediate release of the women. All them who came to the court were released from there.

“Only about 12 of them who were not in this prison are expected to be released from the Okigwe prison where they are held. The case has also been struck out,” Mr Amadi said.

Earlier on Friday, the Takeitback Movement spearheaded by Omoyele Sowore, a presidential aspirant of African Action Congress (AAC), demanded the release of the women.

“We strongly protest the unjust detention of over 100 Nigerian women in Owerri, Imo State, and are outraged at the biased treatment of Nigerians in their own country,” the movement said in a statement by its Director of Media and Communication, Rachel Onamusi-Kpiasi.

“Nigerians are slaughtered mercilessly at an increasingly disturbing frequency by herdsmen and the present government neither speaks nor acts. There have been zero arrests of the perpetrators and no compensation for the surviving victims. Boko Haram has decimated the North with scant retribution save for the present government swelling their coffers in ransom money.

“But women – our mothers, wives and sisters – who carried out a peaceful protest and caused neither harm nor disturbance to civic peace are quickly rounded up like cattle.”

The group said the government’s disregard for human rights of citizens is a disrespect for human life.

“The government’s disregard of the fundamental human rights of her citizens, as well as the reports of starvation of the arrested women since their incarceration points to a disrespect for human life and well-being. Carrying IPOB memorabilia can never be sufficient justification for this gross miscarriage of justice.

“The TakeitBack Movement fundamentally believes that all Nigerians have a right to peaceful protests. We also believe that raising questions about the restructuring of Nigeria is an inalienable right.

”Again, we ask, where is the justice? While men, who have maimed and killed hundreds walk around free and unfettered, our mothers from the South-east are in prison for raising a flag. We demand the immediate release of these women,” the group said.

Kofi Annan: The UN’s ‘Rock Star’ Secretary-General is dead

Kofi Annan, who died Saturday at the age of 80, led the United Nations through the divisive years of the Iraq war and the trauma of the September 11, 2001 attacks.

The first secretary-general from sub-Saharan Africa, Ghanaian-born Annan was credited for raising the UN’s profile during his two-term tenure, from January 1997 to December 2006.

The charismatic, quiet-spoken career diplomat will be remembered as the United Nations’ star secretary-general — and arguably the world body’s most popular leader.

But, as peacekeeping chief, two of the UN’s darkest chapters — the Rwandan genocide and the Bosnian war — happened on his watch.

“I have sought to place human beings at the center of everything we do — from conflict prevention, to development, to human rights,” Annan said in his 2001 speech after accepting the Nobel Peace Prize.

At the time, as the world was reeling from the September 11 attacks, Annan and the organization were jointly given the honor “for their work for a better organized and more peaceful world.”

Promoted from within
Annan — the seventh secretary-general — devoted four decades of his working life to the United Nations and was the first chief to rise from within the organization’s ranks.

After heading up UN human resources and then its budget office, he was appointed peacekeeping chief in 1993, a post he held until he was catapulted to the top UN job four years later.

In recent years, Annan had returned to the diplomatic stage to lead an advisory commission in Myanmar on the crisis in Rakhine state.

He had encouraged the government to grant citizenship to the Muslim Rohingya. More than 700,000 Rohingya were driven out of Rakhine in an army campaign last year.

He also set up a foundation devoted to conflict resolution and joined the Elders group of statesmen, which regularly speaks out on global issues.

UN failures
In his autobiography “Interventions: A Life in War and Peace,” Annan wrote that he envisioned the United Nations as serving “not only states but also peoples” as “the forum where governments are held accountable for their behavior toward their own citizens.”

The UN’s failures to live up to that promise in Rwanda and Bosnia would shape Annan’s tenure as secretary-general, he wrote.

The blue helmets pulled out of Rwanda in 1994 during the bloody chaos and a year later, the world body failed to protect its own “safe area” of Srebrenica when Bosnian Serb forces rounded up and killed thousands of Muslim men and boys.

Those debacles “left me with what would become my greatest challenge as secretary-general: creating a new understanding of the legitimacy, and necessity, of intervention in the face of gross violations of human rights,” Annan wrote.

‘Diplomatic rock star’
While Rwanda and Srebrenica cast a pall over his tenure as peacekeeping chief, Annan transitioned into his new role as UN chief with ease.

He quickly became a familiar face on television, his name made newspaper headlines, and he was a sought-after guest at gala events and New York dinner parties.

He was often described as a “diplomatic rock star.”

Annan owed his appointment to the United States, which had vetoed a second term for Egypt’s Boutros Boutros-Ghali after relations went sour, but he often proved his independence from major powers.

He annoyed the United States when he said the 2003 invasion of Iraq was “illegal” because it was not endorsed by the UN Security Council.

Annan was later accused of corruption in the Iraq oil-for-food scandal, one of the most trying times of his tenure.

Some commentators saw the 2005 investigation of Annan and his son as payback for his invasion comments.

A commission on inquiry cleared Annan of any serious wrongdoing, but found ethical and management lapses linked to his son Kojo’s ties with a Swiss firm that won lucrative contracts under the scheme.

Annan later admitted that the scandal had sorely tested his mettle not only as secretary-general, but as a father.

From Ghana to Geneva
Born in Kumasi, the capital city of Ghana’s Ashanti region, Annan was the son of an executive of a European trading company, the United Africa company, a subsidiary of the Anglo-Dutch multinational Unilever.

In his autobiography, he describes coming of age along with the independence movement in Ghana, and experiencing a “complete change in culture and society.”

He attended a Methodist-founded boarding school at the age of 13 and went to university in Kumasi before receiving a scholarship to study in the United States.

He studied economics at Macalester College in Minnesota and management at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

He also attended the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva.

In 1965, Annan married Titi Alakija, a Nigerian woman from a well-to-do family. They had a daughter, Ama, and Kojo, but the couple separated in the late 1970s.

He was married a second time in 1984 to Nane Lagergren, a Swedish lawyer at the United Nations and the niece of Raoul Wallenberg. They have a daughter, Nina.

After ending his second term as UN chief, Annan went on to take high-profile mediation roles in Kenya and in Syria.

He enjoyed some success in ending post-election turmoil in Kenya in 2007, but he resigned from a peace mission for Syria.

Annan complained that divisions among world powers at the Security Council had turned his job as Syria envoy into a “mission impossible.”

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18 snakes found in Sylhet police station: spread panic among the policemen’

Snakes which were captured from the Sylhet Beanibazar police station compound on Friday; August 17, 2018 Dhaka Tribune
‘Recently, the number of snakes in our premises increased a lot, which spread panic among the policemen’

A police station in Sylhet had become so overrun with venomous snakes, it called in a local snake charmer to round up the reptiles on Friday.

By 10am on Friday, Md Borhan Uddin Jalali had caught 18 venomous snakes of different species from the Sylhet Beanibazar police station compound, including two cobras.

OC Shahjalal Munshi said the first signs of a problem arose last winter with the sighting of snakes in the station compound.

“Recently, the number of snakes in our premises increased a lot, which spread panic among the policemen,” he said. “There were 10 snake babies found in the last few days also.”

The OC said snake charmer Borhan along with five of his associates were brought in from Sunamganj to tackle the situation.

“I hope our men will stop panicking as the snakes have been caught,” he said.

Md Borhan said he is feeling good after rescuing the snakes.

“I will give the snakes to poor people of my community, so they can earn money from showing games,” he said.

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