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NDLEA Nabs Lagos Hotelier Adekaz for Drug Trafficking

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Adekaz NDLEA

By Adedapo Adesanya

A popular hotelier and socialite in Lagos, Mr Ademola Afolabi Kazeem, who is also known as Adekaz or Abdallah Kazeem Muhammed, has been apprehended by operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).

The suspect, who owns Adekaz Hotels, was arrested over offences bordering on exportation and trafficking of illicit drugs.

His arrest came 10 days after he was declared wanted by the agency on Tuesday, November 1, following his failure to honour NDLEA invitations and an order granted by a Federal High Court in Lagos.

The wanted suspect was uncovered as the sponsor of some traffickers arrested by the anti-narcotics agency in their recent attempt to export cocaine to Dubai, UAE and other destinations outside Nigeria.

According to a statement by NDLEA spokesman, Mr Femi Babafemi, the search for Adekaz paid off on Thursday, November 10, when he was successfully taken into custody and is being interviewed.

His lid was blown open after the arrest of one of his mules, Mr Bolujoko Muyiwa Babalola, a Lagos BRT driver, on June 27 at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Ikeja, when he named him as the owner of the 900 grams of cocaine he ingested.

Following Adekaz’s failure to honour invitations sent to him, the agency approached a Federal High Court in Lagos with three prayers: to attach and seal his identified properties in choice areas of Lagos island and Ibadan; declare him wanted and block his bank account with a cash balance of N217 million, all of which were granted.

In a related development, NDLEA operatives also arrested a businesswoman, Mrs Okefun Darlington Chisom, over her links with two Pakistanis: Mr Asif Muhammed, 45 and Mr Hussain Naveed, 57, arrested at the Lagos airport with 8 kilograms of cocaine concealed in a sound system while attempting to board a Qatar Airways flight to Lahole, Pakistan via Doha on Saturday, November 5.

Meanwhile, an automobile parts dealer, Mr Omeje Oliver (a.k.a David Mark), who was arrested on Monday, October 31, in Enugu, where he fled after abandoning his business at Aspanda, Trade Fair Complex Lagos on April 16, in connection with the seizure of 600 grams of heroin concealed inside soles of lady’s footwears going to Liberia, has been linked to another drug seizure.

A further look at the organisation’s database revealed that Mr Omeje was also involved in a case of 1.580kg Methamphetamine seized from one Victor Nwobodo Friday, who was arrested at the MMIA during his aborted trip to Jakarta, Indonesia, on February 6, 2018. Charges have been filed against the suspect at the Federal High Court Lagos in respect of the old seizure and the recent one.

Similarly, NDLEA operatives attached to the SAHCO import shed of the MMIA Lagos have intercepted another consignment of Tramadol from Karachi, Pakistan.

A total of 6 cartons comprising 497,900 tablets of Royal Tramaking brand of Tramadol 225mg with a gross weight of 304.90 kilograms were recovered after a joint examination by stakeholders on Friday, November 11.

In a similar development, operatives in Ogun State, in the early hours of Saturday, November 12, raided a warehouse in the Ogere area of Ikene LGA where they seized 273 jumbo bags of cannabis sativa weighing 3,533 kilograms (3.533tons) from a couple, Mr and Mrs Jesutofunmi Solomon.

This came on the heels of the seizure of 176kgs of C/S at Ogere trailer park on Wednesday, November 9 and the destruction of 15 hectares of cannabis plantation in the Gbamgbam area of the state.

In the same vein, operatives in Osun state have raided a cannabis plantation at Obada sawmill, Owena Ijesa in Oriade LGA where they destroyed 1.2hectares, recovered 2,823kgs of processed C/S and arrested 13 suspects on Sunday, 6th November.

In Ondo, operatives seized 78kgs of cannabis from a dealer, Beauty Godwin, at Ofosu along Benin-Ore express road and another 264kgs from Abdul Rasheed Mohammed, and Abdul Rasheed Haruna at Sanusi camp 2 in Owo, while in Rivers state, anti-narcotics officers of the Agency arrested Damion Onuoha during a raid at Elele Alimini community, Emuoha LGA, where he was found with 1.6kgs of Methamphetamine as well as monetary exhibit amounting to N650,700.

A joint operation with the military at Habour road, Port Harcourt City also led to the arrest of Sandra David and the seizure of different quantities of cocaine and heroin as well as N2.1 million cash exhibit from her home.

In Edo state, operatives located and destroyed 10 clusters of cannabis sativa farms measuring 14 hectares at Igwalor forest, Uhunmwonde LGA where five bags of processed C/S weighing 47.7kgs were recovered, while a raid at Obadan village, in the same LGA also led to the recovery 11 bags of cannabis sativa seeds weighing 399kgs and 34 bags of processed substance weighing 431kgs, bringing the total weight to 830kgs. Two suspects: Enododia Sunday and Osayaba Paul, were arrested at the scene.

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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Aminu Adamu Lands in Prison for Insulting Aisha Buhari

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Aminu Adamu Aisha Buhari

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

A student of the Federal University, Dutse, Jigawa State, Mr Aminu Adamu, has been remanded in prison for allegedly ‘insulting’ the wife of President Muhammadu Buhari, Mrs Aisha Buhari.

A few days ago, news filtered in that Mr Adamu was kidnapped by some security officials to Aso Rock, Abuja, over his post on Twitter that the President’s wife was feeding fat on the taxes paid by the poor masses.

This did not go down well with the First Lady, and the student, who is reportedly due to write his final year exams next week, was taken away from his campus and allegedly tortured.

This action angered many Nigerians, who asked Mrs Buhari to release the man or charge him in court.

On Tuesday, the student was charged to court by the police, and he was remanded in the Suleja correctional facility in Niger State, pending when his bail application would be heard next Wednesday.

According to his lawyer, Mr C.K. Agu, the student was arraigned before a court sitting in Abuja, but he pleaded not guilty to the charges levelled against him.

“Even in the court session yesterday, we notified the judge about the efforts made to have him released on bail, but we did not receive any reply from the police.

“We applied to the court to release the student on bail on health grounds and the fact that he will sit for the exam on December 5.

“The court has ordered the police to provide the bail application before it for consideration between Tuesday and Wednesday,” Mr Agu informed BBC Hausa Service.

On June 9, 2022, Mr Adamu posted a picture of Mrs Aisha Buhari at the presidential primary of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in Abuja held two days earlier and wrote in the Hausa language, “Su mama anchi kudin talkawa ankoshi,” which loosely means “Mama is feeding fat on poor people’s money.”

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House of Reps Probes Incessant Attacks on INEC Offices

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By Modupe Gbadeyanka

The House of Representatives has condemned the incessant attacks on the offices of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

At the plenary on Wednesday, the green chamber of the National Assembly said the actions of the arsonists could put the nation’s democracy under threat.

On November 10, 2022, an INEC building in the Abeokuta South Local Government Area of Ogun State was burned, with over 65,000 uncollected PVCs destroyed by the arsonists. A similar incident happened in Osun State and a few days ago, the office of the electoral body was attacked in Ebonyi State.

It was gathered that since 2019, about 42 attacks have been carried out on INEC offices in 14 states and to the House of Reps, this is worrisome.

In order to curb this, the parliament has set up an ad-hoc committee to investigate the incessant razing of the offices of INEC within three weeks and produce a report of its findings.

At the plenary presided over by the Speaker, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila, the House urged the Nigeria Police Force, the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), and other security agencies to liaise with the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minster of Justice in bringing the perpetrators to book.

The decision to probe the matter followed a motion on notice moved by a lawmaker, Mr Olarewaju Ibrahim Kunle.

According to him, the attackers destroyed the main building of INEC in Ogun State earlier this month and other facilities such as 904 ballot boxes, 29 voting cubicles, 30 megaphones, 57 election bags, eight electric power generators and 65,699 uncollected Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs).

The lawmaker said on the same day, arsonists and thugs set ablaze the INEC building at Oke Iresi, Ede South Local Government of Osun State.

He warned that if these systematically orchestrated attacks on personnel and facilities of the agency are not checked, the 2023 general elections could be disrupted.

Mr Kunle appealed to his colleagues to take urgent action to protect democracy in Nigeria.

His appeal was welcomed, with the parliament calling on “politicians and stakeholders to admonish their supporters to refrain from attacks and violence before or during the 2023 elections.”

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Stanbic IBTC Pension Managers Unveils Platform for Youth to Explore Business Prowess

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Stanbic IBTC Pension Managers

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

An initiative to give an opportunity to youth in the country to explore their creativity and business prowess has been introduced by Stanbic IBTC Pension Managers Limited.

The platform known as FUZE talent hunt will employ a holistic approach to youth empowerment and feature four categories across music, dance, fashion and technology, a statement from the leading pension fund administrator (based on assets under management) said.

According to the subsidiary of Stanbic IBTC Holdings, the first-of-its-kind talent hunt aims to promote indigenous talents.

The chief executive of Stanbic IBTC Pension Managers, Mr Olumide Oyetan, explained that the project was to the benefit of Nigerian society, adding that as a future-ready organisation, Stanbic IBTC valued talent, creativity and innovation and created the platform to shine the spotlight on youngsters and provide the necessary support they require to succeed, regardless of their chosen sphere of influence or industry.

He stated that youth empowerment had become increasingly essential with the heightened unemployment rate declared by the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics (NBS) at over 33 per cent.

On her part, an Executive Director at Stanbic IBTC Pension Managers, Ms Nike Bajomo, disclosed that the “primary goal of the FUZE Talent hunt is to create a platform for Nigeria’s talented youth to engage and learn from other youths while also gaining access to funds and best-in-class mentoring to support the actualisation of their dreams.”

She urged young Nigerians to participate in the event, stating that the audition application is free, and the public would be relied upon to vote for their preferred candidate, who would be showcased at the grand finale in December 2022.

“FUZE is open to all Nigerians between the ages 18 and 35 years. To participate, you can download the Stanbic IBTC Events App on either the android or iOS store, register and upload an audition video,” she said.

It was disclosed that the winners of the FUZE Talent Hunt would be unveiled at the FUZE Festival slated for December 21, 2022, and in addition to the chance to win N32 million, contestants will gain recognition in the industry and winners will receive mentorship to support their careers.

“Around the world today, young Nigerians are making a statement on the global scene, putting their names and communities on the roadmap to greatness.

“The average young Nigerian is bursting with talent and potential waiting to be harnessed, and we are here to give them the support they need to soar high. After all, Nigeria is our home, and we drive her growth,” the chief executive of Stanbic IBTC Holdings, Mr Demola Sogunle, said.

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