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Delay in Releasing Nnamdi Kanu Not in National Interest—Group

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Nnamdi Kanu IPOBR

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

The federal government has been warned against delaying the release of the leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Mr Nnamdi Kanu, saying it is “not an action taken in the national interest.”

A few days ago, Mr Kanu was discharged of the charges against him by a court on the ground that his repatriation to Nigeria from Kenya was illegal.

The Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Mr Abubakar Malami, said the government has reasons to keep the IPOB leader. The government later appealed the justice and sought a stay of execution.

But a pan-Igbo sociopolitical pressure organisation, the South East Revival Group (SERG), wants the government to release him, saying it was against the “victimisation and exclusion policy of the” President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration, saying it was part of the insecurity in the region.

In a statement signed by its President and National Coordinator, Mr Willy Ezugwu, the SERG said, “Before the Court of Appeal ruling discharging Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, President Muhammadu Buhari administration got the legal advice of the United Nations, which demanded the unconditional release of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu based on the violent extradition of the IPOB leader by Nigerian government from Kenya to face terrorism trial in Nigeria.

“Like the Court of Appeal, the United Nations, UN Human Rights Council Working Group on Arbitrary Detention indicted Nigeria and Kenya Governments for the arrest and extraordinary rendition, torture and continued detention of Kanu without due process.

“We recall that the UN had asked the Nigerian government for the immediate release of Kanu unconditionally and to pay him adequate compensation for the arbitrary violation of his fundamental human rights.

“The UN also recommended that government officials responsible for the torture meted to the IPOB leader be investigated and punished.

“The UN further directed Nigeria to report back within six months of the transmission of its opinions on Kanu’s matter, steps taken to comply with all the recommendations thereof.

“The United Nations had referred the case of Kanu’s torture to Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment for

further consideration.

“The 16-page report dated July 20, 2022, was adopted on April 4 by the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention at its 93rd session, held between March 30 – April 8, 2022, and reportedly communicated its recommendations to the Federal government of Nigeria on or about

“We’re worried that the current refusal of the Federal Government to first obey the order of the Court of Appeal on Mazi Nnamdi Kanu is already being seen as the kidnapping of a citizen.

“This will definitely worsen the security situation in South East as similar extrajudicial action of the Federal Government, which led to the murder of the leader of the Boko Haram Islamic sect, Yusuf Mohammed, by agents of the state, has been widely acknowledged to be the immediate cause of the extraordinary escalation of violence in the North East, which Nigeria is yet to recover from.

“Since the arrest and detention of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, the South East has become a theatre of blood, and gruesome killings by state and non-state actors in Igbo land are unprecedented.

“The Igbos have been raising alarm on the marginalization of the South East but turning the zone into a butcher zone by the actions and inactions of the Federal Government of Nigeria in recent time is the worst since the civil war.

“We, therefore, urge President Muhammadu Buhari to call the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, to order as it is globally acknowledged that injustice brew anarchy is every society.

“If the Federal Government can order the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to first call off their strike in obedience to the order of the Industrial Court before ASUU could be allowed to appeal the judgment, what is the justification for not obeying the order of the Court of Appeal on Mazi Nnamdi Kanu?

“The extraordinary rendition of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu was considered an injustice and a violation of his fundamental human rights by both the United Nations and the Court of Appeal.

“We, therefore, urge the Nigerian government to make hay while the sun shines and free Nnamdi Kanu in accordance with the express order of the Court of Appeal, as this will mitigate perceptions of bias, exclusion and injustice against the South East region over the years”, the SERG stated.

Modupe Gbadeyanka is a fast-rising journalist with Business Post Nigeria. Her passion for journalism is amazing. She is willing to learn more with a view to becoming one of the best pen-pushers in Nigeria. Her role models are the duo of CNN's Richard Quest and Christiane Amanpour.

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Greater Lagos Vanguard Endorses Sanwo-Olu for 2nd Term

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Greater Lagos Vanguard

By Adedapo Adesanya

A grassroots political organisation, Greater Lagos Vanguard (GLV), has commended all adherents of democracy and good governance for trooping out in their thousands in solidarity with Governor Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State, who flagged off his re-election bid for a second term in office in Lagos on Saturday, December 3.

The group has also lauded the Governor for “a successful first term tenure which has witnessed monumental development strides in various facet of governance and has endeared Mr Governor to the hearts of appreciative Lagosians who trooped out today in solidarity with him, which is an endorsement for his second term in office.”

In a statement jointly signed by its convener, Mr Nelson Ekujumi and its General Secretary, Mr Uche Nnadozie, the organisation stated that, “We feel proud and excited to proclaim that Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu has performed excellently well in his first time in office which is still ongoing, in line with the tradition of the excellent performance of good governance like his predecessors and the Lagos master plan of economic growth and development.”

According to GLV, Mr Sanwo-Olu has distinguished himself excellently well in the areas of governance, such as his outstanding role as the incident commander in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, which earned him local and international accolades.

“The way and manner Governor Sanwo-Olu mobilised men and resources to confront the pandemic was a turning point and testament of his quality as a servant leader, who leads from the front, and it contributed in no small measure to the success recorded by Lagos State in particular and Nigeria in general and became a global reference point,” the statement read.

The group also mentioned the infrastructural development projects of the Governor like construction, reconstruction and renovation of health institutions, roads, 21st-century model schools, ICT, agricultural tools and implements for farmers, first and last-mile buses, empowerment of transportation and traffic agencies, emergency responders fire fighting trucks and equipment, vehicles, motorbikes, APC, walkie talkie, etc for the security agencies among several others.

While commending Mr Sanwo-Olu for a job well done in his first time, it promised to mobilise Lagosians to support, canvass and vote for him on election day based on the testimonials of what he has done.

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SERAP Sues FG over Missing Ecological Funds

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missing ecological funds

By Adedapo Adesanya

Following the expiry of an ultimatum given to President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration to probe the missing ecological funds at all levels, the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has filed a lawsuit against the federal government.

Joined in the suit as respondents are the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr Abubakar Malami, and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr Boss Mustapha.

In a statement on Sunday, SERAP Deputy Director, Mr Kolawole Oluwadare, specifically said the decision to file a lawsuit followed “the failure to probe the spending of trillions of ecological funds by governments at all levels—federal, state and local governments from 2001 to date, and to ensure the prosecution of suspected perpetrators of corruption and mismanagement of public funds.”

According to him, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) recently said that no fewer than 600 persons died, and 1.3 million were rendered homeless as a result of the floods that ravaged most states across the country, with the destruction of properties worth billions.

In the suit number FHC/L/CS/2283/2022 filed last Friday at the Federal High Court, Lagos, SERAP is asking the court to “direct and compel President Buhari to promptly and thoroughly investigate the spending of Ecological Fund by governments at the Federal, state and local government levels from 2001 to date.”

The rights group also wants the court to “direct and compel President Buhari to ensure that suspected perpetrators of corruption and mismanagement of trillions of ecological funds are promptly brought to justice, and any missing public funds fully recovered.”

“The failure to probe the alleged missing trillions, prosecute suspected perpetrators and recover any missing public funds is a fundamental breach of constitutional and international legal obligations,” the statement partly read.

“Impunity for corruption in the management of Ecological Fund will continue as long as high-ranking public officials go largely unpunished for their alleged crimes.

“It is in the public interest to direct and compel President Buhari to probe these allegations so that evidence can be taken before the court and the truth about the spending of ecological funds revealed, and justice served,” it added.

The group alleged further that the federal government had violated the obligations to protect and uphold the human rights of those affected and to provide them with access to justice and effective remedies.

It argued that the government has the legal obligation to address the calamitous consequences of flooding for the human rights of millions of people and to prevent and address the consequences that climate change may reap on human rights.

No date has been fixed for the hearing of the suit.

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Firm Rewards Ibadan Traders for Sorting Waste to Ease Recycling

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Bodija market traders recycling

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

Some traders in Bodija market, Ibadan, Oyo State, have been rewarded for segregating their waste to make it easier for recycling.

The beneficiaries were given gift items like Bluetooth headsets, customised simple chest bags, and customised face caps by the waste management consultant to the Oyo State government, Mottainai Recycling, on Friday through an initiative known as Recyclables for Rewards.

At the campaign, in its third year, two tonnes of recyclables were recovered by the company, which is managing waste collection in the state.

The Managing Director of Mottainai Recycling, Mr Adey Adewuyi, sensitised traders, buyers and passers-by in Bodija market and its environs on how the waste they generate could be a source of wealth.

Mr Adewuyi, represented by the firm’s Chief Sustainability Officer, Ms Deborah Fadeyi, urged the traders to embrace proper waste disposal and management habits like segregating their waste at source.

He further encouraged them to avoid dumping waste on the median, warning that those caught erring would be fined and punished according to law.

Also, the Special Adviser to Governor Seyi Makinde on Environmental Matters, Mr Ademola Aderinto, explained that the initiative was aimed at creating awareness among traders and residents to segregate their waste at source and recover as much plastics before it enters into the water bodies and landfills.

He said that the event showcases the economic and social benefits of recycling, adding that “the event is aimed at making the good people of Oyo State see value in what they consider as waste.”

“These wastes would have otherwise ended up in landfills and water bodies which will contribute to the pollution of the environment,” he added.

Mr Aderinto discouraged the act of dumping waste on the median by the market men and women and also encouraged them to sort out their waste to ease the act of recycling, noting that the government will do more to eradicate the issue of improper waste disposal and management in the state.

“There was also an adequate and effective sensitisation and awareness campaign in the market on the need for proper waste management. They were also enlightened on the economic benefits of recycling instead of allowing their recyclables to end up on the median, water bodies or the landfills,” he said.

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