Drama In Court As DSS Officers Try To Abduct Sowore In What He Calls Assassination Attempt

By Ike A. Offor

There was drama of epic phenomenon as the personel of the Department of State Security, DSS attempted to rearrest the convener of Revolutionnow and the CEO of Sahara Reporters, who was also the presidential candidate for AAC in the last presidential election, Mr Omoyele Sowore at Abuja High Court today.

The drama has been given much thoughts by Nigerians on what has become the weight of the decisions by the Judiciary, and the power of the executive to use state appartuses to harrass civilians in contravention to court decisions.

Sowore was being dragged by the officials of the DSS while his lawyers and supporters of Revolutionnow opposed with strong resistence the re-arrest attempt by the DSS officers.

Sowore in his words called the action of the DSS, ‘ an assasination attempt on his life before the High Court judge. It was alleged also that the Judge was chased by the DSS officials while she took to her heels and lost her wig, and her shoes in the process. He was at the ended rearrested and taken back into DSS detention and he will be dragged back to court for bail once again.

This is what has become of the judiciary under the leadership of Muhammadu Buhari where he has led the fight to show that the judges, the court are not to be respected, which has led to this sort of behaviour inside a court room.

Many Nigerians expressed shock at the manner the Judge and Sowore were treated in the courtroom today. The issue is very serious that the Judge had to run away to save her life and lost her wig and shoes along the way.

Clearly, the DSS has been made an apparatus to be used to harrass, disobey the court and do whatever they are directed from above to done to anyone anywhere and anytime. The court is no more respected and so are the judges and their orders and decsions.

The president candidate of the strongest opposition party, PDP, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has condemn the action by the DSS in what he called the desecration of the sanctity of the courtroom.

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Nigeria May Descend Into Extreme Poverty Very Soon — World Bank Raises Alarm |The Republican News

The World Bank in its 2019 Nigeria Economic Update Report which was released on Monday, December 2, stated that the country might soon plunge into poverty if the federal government fails to revive economic growth and create jobs.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the economic update is prepared twice a year (Spring and Fall) to appraise stakeholders interested in economic and social developments, prospects and policies.

Marco Hernendez, Lead Economist of the bank, expressed worry that 100 million Nigerians live on less than 1.90 dollars per day.

According to Hernendez, with population growth estimated at 2.6 per cent, out spacing economic growth in the context of weak job creation, per capital incomes are falling.

He said: “Under a business-as-usual scenario where Nigeria maintains the current pace of growth and employment levels, by 2030 the number of people living in abject poverty can increase by 30 million.”

Hernendez emphasized the need to build reforms to mitigate risks and promote inclusiveness while presenting policy options for increasing economic efficiency to promote growth and job creation in Nigeria.

He further said that robust growth and job creation would require strengthening micro economic management while increasing fiscal revenues to attenuate the impact of oil sector fluctuations.

The lead economist who also called for investments in human capital and infrastructure commended the government for improved regulation to make it easier for entrepreneurs to start and operate businesses.

He, however, commended the federal government for ratifying the social protection policy and establishing a state and national social registry of poor and vulnerable households to enhance social protection.

According to him, “Under a business-as-usual scenario where Nigeria maintains the current pace of growth and employment levels, by 2030 the number of people living in abject poverty can increase by 30 million.”

Meanwhile, The Herald reported that Maryam Uwais, special adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on social investments disclosed that about 620,947 poor and vulnerable Nigerians benefited from the recovered looted funds by the late former head of state, General Sani Abacha.

Uwais who made this known on Monday, October 21, at a public function in Port Harcourt, Rivers, said between August/September 2018 and September/October payment 2019, the total cumulative amount disbursed from the Abacha loot is $76,538,530 and $27,099,028 from the International Development Association (IDA) credit.

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BREAKING NEWS: DSS Releases Omoyele Sowore From Detention | The Republican News

The Department of States Services has released rights activist and presidential candidate of the African Action Congress in the February 2019 general elections, Mr. Omoyele Sowore.

This was made known by his online publishing outfit, Sahara Reporters.

Sowore was released on Thursday evening.

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BREAKING NEWS: Orji Uzor Kalu Sentenced To 12-years Jail Term Over N7.3bn Fraud |The Republican News

By Joseph Onyekwere

The federal high court in Lagos has sentenced the former governor of Abia Stae Senator Orji Uzor Kalu to 12 years imprisonment after being found guilty on all the 39-count charges brought against him.

He was convicted of N7.65billion fraud perpetuated when he was Abia State governor between 1999 and 2007.

Kalu was convicted alongside his firm, Slok Nigeria Limited and his former Abia State director of finance, Ude Udeogu.

The court also ordered forfeiture of all assets of his company to the federal government.

Justice Mohammed Idris, who delivered the sentence, had earlier declared him guilty of the charge in the case that had been on for 12 years.

In an amended 39-counts-charge, they were accused by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) of conspiring and diverting over N7 billion from the coffers of the state.

In one of the counts, the EFCC alleged that Kalu “did procure Slok Nigeria Limited – a company solely owned by you and members of your family – to retain in its account, domiciled with the then Inland Bank Plc, Apapa branch, Lagos, an aggregate sum of N7,197,871,208.7 on your behalf.”

The prosecution claimed that the N7.1 billion “formed part of the funds illegally derived from the treasury of the Abia State Government and which was converted into several bank drafts before they were paid into the said company’s account.”

The prosecuting counsel, Rotimi Jacobs, said the ex-governor violated Section 17(c) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2004, and was liable to be punished under Section 16 of the same Act.

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BREAKING: Orji Uzor Kalu Found Guilty Of N7.1bn Fraud

By Unini Chioma

Justice Mohammed Idris of a Federal High Court in Lagos has convicted a former governor of Abia state, Orji Uzor Kalu and his company Slok Nigeria Ltd, of 39 Counts charge of Fraud and Money Laundering.

The court found the second convict, his former commissioner of Finance Jonnes Udeogo guilty of 34 counts.

The court will soon proceed to sentence.

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24 Nigerian Sex Traffickers From Edo Sentenced To 7 Years Jail Term In France |The Republican News

A French court sentenced 24 members of a Lyon-based sex trafficking ring to prison terms of up to seven years for forcing Nigerian women into prostitution.

Nearly all of the defendants were themselves Nigerian, in the latest case to highlight the growing use of African migrants in the European sex trade.

They include one of Europe’s most wanted women, Jessica Edosomwan, accused of acting as a France-based “madam” to women recruited mainly in Nigeria’s southern Edo State.

Edosomwan was tried in absentia.

Nigeria was the main country of origin for the tens of thousands of migrants who crossed the Mediterranean to Europe by boat in 2016 and 2017.

Many were women and girls lured to Europe with false promises of jobs as hairdressers or seamstresses, only to find themselves selling sex to repay their smugglers.

Seventeen women filed complaints against the defendants but none of the victims attended the trial, with the exception of one former sex worker who found herself in the dock for luring another woman into the trade.

The accused had faced up to 10 years’ imprisonment on charges including human trafficking, pimping, money laundering and helping people live illegally in France.

Prosecutors estimated that the victims, aged 17 to 38, made up to $166 000 a month for the syndicate by selling sex in vans parked by the side of the road for as little as 10 euros.

A French mechanic who looked after the vans was among the 24 defendants.

Last year, 15 members of a Paris-based, female-led pimping ring known as the “Authentic Sisters” – many themselves former trafficking victims – were jailed for up to 11 years for forcing girls into slavery in France.

Similar gangs have also been dismantled in Italy and Britain.

The UN estimates that 80 percent of young Nigerian women arriving in Italy – usually their first port of call in Europe – are already in the clutches of prostitution networks, or quickly fall under their control.

Most of the women come from Nigeria’s Benin City, a human trafficking hotbed.

Many told investigators they had taken part in “juju” or black magic rituals before leaving Nigeria, during which they had to promise to repay the money for their passage to Europe.

Source: AFP

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Gov. Bello Repeals Law On Pension, Allowances For Former Governors, Deputies, Ex Speakers, Deputies In Zamfara

Zamfara State Governor, Alhaji Bello Mohammad


It is my pleasure to welcome you all to this event of signing of the law which repeals the law on pension and other allowances for former Governors, former Deputy Governors, former Speakers and former Deputy Speakers of Zamfara State 2019.

  1. You may recall the recent letters received from the immediate past Governor of the State, which have gone viral on the social media, requesting for payment of a whopping amount of N10,000,000 monthly as upkeep allowance in addition to a monthly pension equivalent to his monthly salary while in office.
  2. When I received the letter, it dawned on me that the law that provided for such unprecedented benefits did not take into account the social and economic realities of our State, most specifically the daunting task of maintenance of peace and building a more prosperous state that all citizens would be proud of.
  3. Since my assumption of office as the Governor of Zamfara State, the central focus of my administration is to combat the formidable security challenge inherited from the immediate past administration. When I took over the mantle of leadership as the Governor, the State was literally under siege by armed bandits and other miscreants. Gladly, today, the unprecedented security challenge has been largely contained through the policy of dialogue and reconciliation opted by my administration.
  4. As it is evident that the security challenge is partly accounted for by poor governance and lack of gainful opportunities for our teeming populace, we have also directed our energy towards rebuilding the state’s economy through efforts to lure Foreign Direct Investments into the critical sectors of our economy and teaching of valuable skills that will help our youths to be self-reliant.
  5. Even though payment of pensions and other entitlements to disengaged public servants is one of the missions of my administration, I cannot comprehend why a large portion of our meagre resources should be dedicated for payment to a select few while most of the retirees from the State and Local Government Service have not received a dime as gratuity for almost seven out of the eight years of the immediate past administration.
  6. It is on record that the backlog of pension and gratuity for Local Governments and primary school teachers left behind by the immediate past administration stands at N3,399,906,492.33, while that of State Government retirees stands at N3,691,256,543.09. Apart from a backlog of pension liabilities left behind by the administration, we have also inherited liabilities in respect of unpaid promotion benefits as well as annual salary increments for the State and Local Government Civil Servants. Moreover, what moral justification could be offered for such a jumbo package for a few when the social index has consistently indicated that the majority of our population lives in absolute poverty?
  7. It may interest you to know that the repealed law, among other things, provided that a former Governor is entitled to:
    i. A monthly pension equivalent to the salary he was receiving while in office;
    ii. The sum of N10,000,000 (ten million naira) monthly as an upkeep allowance;
    iii. Two vehicles to be bought by the State Government and liable to be replaced every four years;
    iv. Free medical treatment for former Governor and his immediate families and vacation within Nigeria and outside;
    v. Thirty days vacation within Nigeria or outside Nigeria;
    vi. A 5-bedroom house in any location of the choice of the former Governor within the country.
  8. The law also extended similar largess to the former Deputy Governors, former Speakers of the State Assembly, and former Deputy Speakers. It is estimated that it will cost the State the sum of N702,000,000 every year to settle the upkeep allowances for the beneficiaries of the repealed law alone.
  9. Taking into account the state of our economy and the formidable task of rebuilding Zamfara State ahead of us, and subject to the provision of Section 5(2) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, I filed for the repealing of the law before the State House of Assembly. Gladly, the law repealing the bogus allowances law is here before me for assent this afternoon.
  10. I would like to use this medium to appeal to all the concerned individuals for their understanding. As leaders, we should bear in our minds that we have a great task of building Zamfara State and leaving behind a lasting legacy for both the present and future generations. My administration is committed to settling all the benefits of political office holders as provided by Revenue Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission.
  11. My administration will continue to focus more considerable attention to matters of development of the State and the wellbeing of its people. You are all aware of our efforts in this direction so far. Notably, we are making a significant investment in our youth development, considering the fact that the future of the state depends on them. We have concluded plans to kick start a statewide skills acquisition programme through which our youths would learn valuable skills for livelihood.
  12. Our State has enormous potentials in agriculture and solid minerals, and we have a serious challenge in properly harnessing and transforming these sectors in tune with our developmental needs. That is why we are paying attention to partnering with foreign investors to fully leverage these potentials and make a Zamfara a pride of place.
  13. I would like to use this opportunity to thank our people for your incredible support, prayers and goodwill. I assure you that my administration will remain responsive to your needs.
  14. Thank you all, and God bless.

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Air Peace: No Jail Term For Onyema But May Pay $14m On Taxes, Fine If Found Guilty |The Republican News

Air Peace Airline boss, Allen Onyema

A US-based attorney has analysed the indictment against Air Peace boss, Allen Onyema and Ejiroghene Eghagha and clearly stated that the case is based on two sticking points, which does not involve a jail term unlike the self-serving distractions that claims of 105 years of jail term if he was found guilty.

In his account, the US-based attorney, Mr Ken Orji, stated that there will be only fine for infractions just like Donald Trump did recently on similar case.

Below is the sticking points and conclusions by the attorney

He said: I’d like to focus on the indictment and not speculate, even though all these appear to have been orchestrated from haters and detractors in Nigeria.

There are basically two sticking points the US tried to put out:

1. That he commingled charitable or non-profit organizations’ money.

Here, Mr Onyema and co-offender were accused of using money from his charity organisations to finance expenses in his commercial airline, Air Peace, which is an infraction. This is basically because the money for charity is solely for charitable or non-profits purposes and not for profitable purposes, which his airline is for.

2. That he used his US registered limited liability companies to sell to another Air Peace and made money, which ought to have been taxed. Not sure he paid any taxes.

The transfers from the charitable accounts are illegal and he will be fined for it. Like I posted earlier, President Trump used money he raised from charitable contributions to buy art works and fund his hotel operations. He recently settled with New York AG and paid $2 million fine.


It’s essentially a civil infraction and does not require any jail term.

The letters of credit request from Fidelity to Wells Fargo and JP Morgan are normal. These clearly showed the sources of the funds and would not stick as criminal charges in the Courts. It’s a kitchen sink strategy that piles on the heat but will generate zero fire.

The big one is that Allen bought the planes and resold them to Air Peace while building in $2 million profits on the sales. Because Allen may not have paid any taxes on those, the US will argue that those gains were laundered money. There are about $6 million of those and they will likely be forfeited.

Having written all these, the allegations in the indictment are all clearly very civil in nature and Allen’s legal team will be able to quickly reach a settlement.


$6 million of those mark-ups sold to Air Peace will be taxed with statutory penalties. There will be a fine for commingling the charitable organizations’ money. There will be civil penalties for not paying those assumed taxes in the year those deals were executed.


That $14 million will not come back to Allen, but he is not going to jail.

(Is a United States-Based Attorney)

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8 Former French Colonies In Africa To Withdraw Cash Reserves Kept At France’s Central Bank

The decision of West African nations to withdraw forex reserves from France, fraught with implications, warn experts

Felix Tih and James Tasamba


The proposal of eight West African nations to withdraw their currency reserves from the French central bank, has evoked a spate of reactions. 

While it has been largely hailed in the African continent, experts fear, the move having implications on the French economy, is fraught with political ramifications.

The move also comes with the decision to replace the CFA franc – the euro-linked currency used in 14 West and Central African countries – with new common West African currency, named eco.

Even though these eight West African countries which include, Benin, Togo, Burkina Faso, Mali, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Niger and Guinea Bissau had gained independence years ago, they continued to vest their foreign exchange reserves with the French central bank. They have now decided to move their reserves to Senegal.

“We all agree on this, unanimously, to end this model,” Benin’s President Patrice Talon told French media last Thursday.

He claimed that Paris has also agreed to release their reserves, which will now be vested with the Senegal-based Central Bank of West African States.

The CFA, which was specially created in 1945 for the French colonies of Africa, is linked to the euro and its convertibility is guaranteed by France.

According to the arrangement, described by analysts as a colonial relic, these African countries, had to deposit half of their foreign currency reserves, in the French central bank.

A Uganda based analyst Fred Muhumuza said the arrangement was linked to colonial ties with France. Muhumuza, who teaches economics at the Makerere University — one of largest and oldest institution of higher learning – said that depositing currency in developed countries was aimed to insulate it from political instabilities back home.

“They [developing countries] also keep their reserves in the central banks of developed countries, to get good returns, “he said. Many countries prefer to keep their reserves with the Federal Reserve System or the central banking system of the U.S., as international trade mostly uses the U.S. dollar as exchange.

“It is also true, that these reserves act as a good resource for developed countries and not for their real owners,” Muhumuza told Anadolu Agency.

Move to hit French economy

He, however, said the move was fraught with political implications, as it will hit French economy. “Loss of a pool of resources and control of the economies of these countries will have cascading effects on France, which may not take the move lightly. It will be difficult to transfer reserves. There were similar proposals before. They never materialized,” said the experts, adding that he was keeping his fingers crossed.

President Talon agreed that the decision may take time, but it has been adopted at the meeting of Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

In July, the leaders of the region also adopted a proposal to introduce single currency — eco, for the entire region by 2020.

In the first phase, countries with their own currencies (Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Nigeria and Sierra Leone) will launch the eco.

In a second phase the eight UEMOA (West African Economic and Monetary Union) member countries that have in common the CFA franc (Ivory Coast, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Mali, Togo, Niger, Benin and Guinea-Bissau) will be covered by eco.

The introduction of the eco was initially planned in 2003, but was repeatedly delayed due to various factors.

Chadian President Idris Debby said the move will clear injustice heaped on the African countries for too long. “The injustice has gone for too long. It is time to discuss issues with France to clarify many things, to allow us to have our monetary sovereignty. We do not have it today,” he told a media briefing on Monday.

The West African Economic and Monetary Union consist of Benin, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Niger, Senegal, and Togo from West Africa. The Central African Economic and Monetary Union consists of Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, and Gabon.

“The success of the monetary union will depend on the dispositions of member states especially the Francophone countries who still rely on France for many things,” Bashiru Animashaun, an expert on the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), told Anadolu Agency.

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Again, Lightning Kills 19 Cows In Iba Community In Osun State |The Republican News

No fewer than 19 cows were killed by lightning at Iba in Ifelodun Local Government Area of Osun State.

It was gathered on Saturday that some Fulani herdsmen were grazing their cattle on the field around the Apala area of the town when the incident happened.

It was learnt that all the 19 cows on the field at that time were killed by the lightning.

In his reaction to the incident, the monarch of the town, Oba Adekunle Oyedeji, sympathised with the victims, while urging them to burn the dead cows to avoid an outbreak of an epidemic.

Oba Oyedeji, in a statement by his media assistant, Gbolagunte Bamigbola, called for calm among indigenes and residents of the town.

“The people of Iba, have over the years been living harmoniously with Fulani in our domain.

“The death of the cows belonging to the Fulani cattle rearers living among us was a natural occurrence occasioned by thunder that struck in the town,” the monarch said.

Also the state governor, Gboyega Oyetola, sympathised with the Fulani traders in the town.

Oyetola, who spoke through his Special Adviser for Agriculture and Food Security, Mr Biodun Ajisefini, during a visit to the town on Saturday, commended the people of the town for living peacefully with Fulani herdsmen in the town.

“We are indeed sad about the unfortunate incident.

“Lightning is a natural phenomenon that we have no power or control over.

“The traders who suffered this loss are part of us, not strangers.

“They have lived here for decades and I commend them for their exemplary contributions to peace in Iba community.

“I want to assure them of my support and indeed government’s support at a time like this,” the governor said.

The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that 36 cows were struck dead by lightning at Ijare in Ifedore Local Government Area of Ondo State in September this year while grazing on a sacred hill.

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