The news of the Arrest Of Journalist , Chido Onumah, by men of the Department of State Service (DSS) on Sunday unsettled the media space and Vanguard can now confirm the real reason the author of the book, We Are All Biafrans was arrested and released after hours.
Upon arrival at Abuja airport 4pm on Sunday, Onumah spent sometime clearing his luggage and was expected to have dinner with a friend. He was waiting to confirm the venue of his appointment when a DSS official walked up to him, flashed his ID card and told him he was to be questioned in connection with a planned protest.
Onumah, who was wearing a T-shirt with the inscription, WE ARE ALL BIAFRANS, which happened to be the title of his new book, was led to the DSS office at Central Abuja. During interrogation, he was asked why he was holding a Nigerian passport and he confidently replied that “I am Nigerian.”
The DSS officials queried why he was putting on the vest with the inscription, which he answered by telling them that was the titled of his new book. Onumah further told the DSS officials that he had more vests in his bag with the same inscription and won’t hesitate to wear either of them after leaving.
According to source, while at the DSS office, Onumah was reading a book while the officials ran a check on his profile. “That was when they discovered that he was more Nigerian as anyone can be.
“They (DSS) now told him (Onumah) that there was an intel they got about some people who were trying to cause unrest and he was picked because of the inscription on his shirt. They told him his shirt’s inscription could trigger an unrest and after much dilly daily, He Was Allowed To Take His Leave ,” the source said.
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The former minister of aviation Femi Fani Kayode has questioned on why the DSS invite Uwazuruike following the video he released through social media concerning Fulani invasion of southerners through the name of livestock grazing implementations.
Kayode in his reaction revealed that there are people that need quick invitation from DSS not Massob leader (Ralf Uwazuruike).
Abdul Azeez Suleiman and the coalition of Northern groups who openly threaten the whole nation and Southerners mostly Igbo leaders with 30 days ultimatum following their disagreement over RUGA or livestock grazing implementations have a call to answer from DSS, he said. The former minister also questioned the silence of DSS since the group issue the ultimatum to the whole nation and also a particular tribe but too quick to invite uwazuruike after his video release.
DSS invite Uwazuruike over this very video, click to watch https://youtu.be/SriBm26lED0
Meanwhile kayode earlier reacted over cows and fulanis embedded in a page of the new Nigeria passports, he revealed that the embedded image is for spiritual and symbolic reasons.
It’s the same that Arabic words are embedded in the Nigeria coat of arms, and in the Nigerian army flag . He summarised with do you want to live in a Fulani controlled theocratic Islamist vasal State? He questioned. Few hours ago information revealed that the United States of America denied many Nigerians entrance into the country. What’s your opinion over this issue? (Biafrianewsmill)
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Heavily fortified security operatives of the Nigeria Police Force and the State Security Service have surrounded the premises of African Independent Television (AIT) after the station came back on air late Friday.
Group Managing Director of DAAR Communication Mr. Tony Akiotu speaking to newsmen said shortly after AIT commenced operation, security forces gathered around the station’s premises
He decried the action saying the action of the Nigeria Police Force and the State Security Service was an ‘unwarranted threat’ on AIT.
He explained that by 12.30 a.m. Saturday morning, the premises of DAAR Communications Plc was surrounded by security operatives of the Nigeria Police Force and the State Security Service.
He went further to say the “heavily fortified security operatives were carrying out surveillance on the premises,”
Mr Akiotu said this is “unusual” and the motive “unclear” but the sation will not be deterrd as “the station is still transmitting signals on its national and global beam,” adding that the action of the security operatives was “unwarranted threat” .
The Federal High Court in Abuja, on Friday, had granted an ex-parte order that restored the operating license of DAAR Communications Plc, owners of African Independent Television, AIT, and Ray Power FM, which was earlier suspended by the National Broadcasting Commission, NBC.
The court ordered both DAAR Communications Plc and NBC to revert to the status quo that was in existence as at May 30, pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit before it. The order followed a suit the media establishment lodged to challenge the suspension of its operating licence on Thursday by the NBC.
The NBC had based its action on allegation that the media outfit breached its rules and regulations. Meanwhile, cited as Respondents in the suit the plaintiff filed through its lawyer, Chief Mike Ozekhome, SAN, were the NBC, the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture (FMIC) and the Attorney General of the Federation, AGF.
The plaintiff equally filed an affidavit of urgency, wherein it urged the court to quickly intervene in the matter. Out of three principal reliefs that DAAR Communications Plc sought in its motion ex-parte, the court declined to grant two of them.
Specifically, the plaintiff had sought to restrain the Respondents, its agents or privies, from interfering with its operations in any manner whatsoever, pending the determination of its application for injunctive reliefs. However, in his ruling, Justice Inyang Ekwo, said he was minded to grant the alternative relief to restore the status quo that was in existence as at when the matter was brought before the court for adjudication.
The court therefore issued, “An order for the maintenance of status quo ante bellum as at 30th of May, 2019, pending the hearing and final determination of the motion on notice filed along with this application”. Justice Ekwo said he would not hesitate to sanction the plaintiff, if the court is later convinced that the order was made in error.
More so, the court ordered all the Respondents to appear before it on June 13, “to show cause why the prayers in the applicant’s motion should not be granted”. DAAR Communications Plc had in its affidavit of urgency that was deposed to by one Mr. Kelly Elisha, prayed the court to wade into the matter that led to NBC’s sanction against it.
“The timeous intervention by this Honourable Court is necessary to prevent irreparable damage from being done to the Plaintiff, thus foisting a situation of complete helplessness on this Honourable Court”, it pleaded. In the motion, the embattled media organisation sought for, “An order of interlocutory Injunction in favour of DAAR Communication Plc, the Plaintiff/Applicant (operators of African Independent Television (AIT), RAYPOWER 100.5 FM, FAJI FM and DARSAT), restraining the Defendants, whether by themselves, their agents, operatives, servants and/or privies, howsoever called, from blocking, jamming, stopping, removing from air and/or interfering with the air waves of the Plaintiff/Applicant in any way and manner howsoever, in its broadcast and airing of news, views, documentaries, or any other legitimate broadcast material that is usually associated with television, radio or social media broadcast pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit.
As well as, “An order of interlocutory Injunction in favour of DAAR Communication Plc, the Plaintiff/Applicant (African Independent Television (AIT), RAYPOWER 100.5 FM, FAJI FM and DARSAT), restraining the Defendants, whether by themselves, their agents, operatives, servants and/or privies, howsoever called from invading the premises of the Plaintiff/Applicant, or closing down, viet armis, the said premises, its operations or broadcast services, pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit”. As part of its grounds for making the application, the Plaintiff/Applicant, told the court that it was the first privately owned Independent Broadcasting Organisation in Nigeria, having been licensed to broadcast on television and radio since 1996.
“The Plaintiff/Applicant has in the best tenets and tradition of broadcast and in compliance with section 22 of 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 as altered, carried out its duties legally, legitimately, morally and nationalistically, in informing, educating and entertaining Nigerians both at home and in the diaspora on sundry matters, which activities have energized and contributed to national development and also nurtured, widened, deepened and strengthened democracy, rule of law, human rights and anti-corruption in Nigeria.
“Since the emergence of the present government, the Plaintiff/Applicant has been under its close surveillance and undue monitoring of its operations by the present government which wrongly believes that the Plaintiff/Applicant had been too supportive of the immediate past government.
“That sometimes on 16th April, 2019, agents of the Federal Government represented by the 1st Defendant, in a Gestapo- like- manner, attacked and pulled down the two gates leading to the Plaintiff/Applicant’s operational Headquarters which damage and destruction run into of hundreds of millions of naira.
“The Defendants and their agents have been writing series of letters with which they harassed and intimidated the Plaintiff over the contents of their broadcast, particularly of late, concerning its social media segment of its morning flagship broadcast show called KAKAKI (the African Voice). “Credible information just reaching the Plaintiff has it that the Defendants have concluded plans to invade and shut down the premises of the Plaintiff and/or part thereof, in the next few days. “Shutting down the broadcast services of the Plaintiff will deny majority of Nigerians access to information which is constitutionally guaranteed, and its teaming workers of their means of livelihood.
“That it is extremely urgent to hear and grant these prayers pending the hearing of the substantive suit, so as prevent irreparable damage which cannot be compensated for on monetary terms from being inflicted on the Plaintiff/Applicant”, it added. NGE condemns suspension of DAAR communications licences, demands reversal
The Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE) has condemned the suspension of the licences of the African Independent Television (AIT) and Ray Power by the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) and demanded its reversal. The NGE expressed its view in a statement in Abuja on Friday.
In the statement signed by President of the Guild, Mrs Funke Egbemode, the editors appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari, to use his good offices to call the NBC to order to revoke the suspension. The Guild demanded in clear terms the revocation of the suspension order as it runs contrary to the ideals of free speech and the fine tenets of press freedom.
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The Department of State Services has warned those behind the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra to have a rethink or be prepared to face the consequences of their action.
According to the service, it is prepared to maintain adequate security across Nigeria, saying it will not allow any person or group to obstruct the freedom of law-abiding citizens.
Spokesperson for the DSS, Peter Afunnaya, said this in a telephone interview with SUNDAY PUNCH, in Abuja, on Friday.
He was reacting to the May 30 sit-at-home order given by the IPOB in the South-East.
Afunnaya said, “The service will not condone people taking the law into their hands and obstructing the freedom of others. The constitution is clear on the fundamental human rights of people and no person should deliberately infringe on the rights of anyone outside the laws of the land.
“The service in the line of its mandate will ensure that adequate security is maintained in all parts of the country and people who take the law into the hands or cause the breakdown of law and order should be ready to face the consequences.”
He explained that for the avoidance of doubt, the warning applied to “all subversive elements” operating under any guise.
Meanwhile, the sit-at-home order by IPOB has continued to generate mixed reactions from some residents of Enugu State.
At Coal Camp motor spare parts market, the traders said though the market would open as directed by the state government, they would not be available for business.
A Toyota spare parts dealer, Monday Ngene, told SUNDAY PUNCH that he would obey the directive, though not as a member of the group but because of the reasons for it.
He said, “Our governors and the so-called leaders have failed to show the people leadership and direction. Therefore, since IPOB and other pro-Biafran movements have shown leadership, it is important to listen to them.
At Ogbete main market, another trader, who gave her name as Onyinye Ogbuabor, said she would go to the market, expressing the fear that she might not make good sales.
She said in the past when such directive was given, the market was usually open but customers and many traders wouldn’t come.
Mr Godwin Eze stated that he would go to work that day and his children would go to school.
“But you see, there is an issue here. Government doesn’t control transportation. In Enugu, public transport system is no longer functional. Most of the owners of the town service buses have a soft spot for the Biafran movement,” Eze added.
He believed that the success and failure of the order would largely depend on the availability of transport.
Also, the state Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria and the National Union of Road Transport Workers promised that their members would be available to transport commuters to their various destinations.
The chairman of the state RTEAN, Chidebere Aniagu, told SUNDAY PUNCH that his members would go to work that day like any other day.
He said, “We have notified our members to be on their routes to service the people.”
His counterpart in the NURTW, Matthew Asogwa, was said to have directed his members to work on May 30.
In a related development, the police in the state advised parents and guardians to prevent their children and wards from being used by any person or group to threaten the peace and safety in the state.
A statement by the Police Public Relations Officer, Ebere Amaraizu, noted that the command would not fold its arms while anyone would foment trouble in the state.
“Those fanning the embers of any unlawful act of sit-at-home order on May 30, 2019 on law-abiding members of the public under any guise with a view to truncating the existing peace in the state will be fished out and be made to face the consequence of their act in line with the law,” he added.
Amaraizu said the state Commissioner of Police, Sulaiman Balarabe, urged all to be law abiding and go about their lawful business in the state before, during and after May 30 without fear of any intimidation or molestation from anyone. (Punch)
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The Coalition of United Political Parties on Wednesday alleged that the Department of State Services is tapping telephone conversations between members of the opposition in the country.
He said the conversations, which were mainly the opposition’s strategies for the forthcoming general elections, were being made available to the leaders of the ruling All Progressives Congress.
The coalition’s national spokesman, Imo Ugochinyere, made the allegation in a statement made available to journalists.
He said, “We wish to express our shock and disappointment with the All Progressives Congress and unscrupulous security agencies who we discovered are tapping our leaders’ calls and leaking our electoral strategies.
“The opposition has uncovered the constant tapping of our calls and location marking by the APC, using the DSS.
“We are utterly disgusted at this shameless act. This administration has proved that nothing is sacred to them anymore.”
Ugochinyere, therefore, called on members of the opposition to abandon telephone conversations and adopt physical meetings or the Whatsapp platform.
But the DSS said there was no truth in the allegation.
It said the debate on the issue was unnecessary and the agency was not in the habit of eavesdropping on private conversations.
The Public Relations Officer of the agency, Mr Peter Afunanya, said this in a statement issued on Wednesday.
He said, “The social media is awash with wrong information of sorts, regarding the agency whose operations and activities are highly misunderstood and misrepresented.
“It is obvious that some merchants of violence are determined to use their platforms to misinform the public for their selfish and political ends. In this regard, the service warns that those bent on entrenching this mischief should be aware of the consequences of their misleading actions.
“The DSS is a responsible organisation and thus, professionally adheres to the ideals of intelligence and security governance expected of it in a democracy. The public is, therefore, urged to disregard the claims of the political group.” (Punch)
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The Department of State Security Services, DSS has withdrawn its invitation to the National Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, in charge of logistics, Okechukwu Ibeanu.
It was earlier reported that Ibeanu alongside Chidi Nwafor, the director of ICT; Ken Ukeagu, director of procurement; Osaze Uzzi, director of voter education and publicity; and Bimbo Oladunjoye, the assistant director of ICT were asked to report at DSS offices in Abuja by 2 pm on Tuesday.
It’s unclear why the agency would drop its decision but sources hinted that some prominent Nigerians intervened because of the “timing”.
This invitation was initially believed to be related to the fiasco that led to the postponement of the general election by one week.
Mahmood Yakubu, a professor and INEC chairman, had blamed the postponement on sabotage and logistical issues. (Nairaland)
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Buhari is planning to sabotage and shift further the rescheduled February 23rd Saturday election and has directed DSS to invite and detain the Federal Commissioner of INEC in charge of operations Prof. Okechukwu Ibeanu. Though the chairman or head of Operations and Logistics is the alleged Buhari’s niece, Mrs Amina Zakari, she is not in the picture here and the question remains why.
The Refusal of INEC to go ahead with staggered elections during the aborted Feb 16 election which ruined Buhari, APC rigging plan is the reason for the new offensive action against INEC to intimidate them into submission.
This was contained in the press release from CUPP, which was delivered by their Spokesman, Mr Ikenga Imo Ugochinyere.
In the statement CUPP called upon all Nigerians to rise up against this ongoing tyrannical leadership abuse and madness which have the potentiality to throw Nigeria into electoral violence that will enable Buhari execute his lawless order that security agents publicly begin killing of people under the guise of ballot snatching.
Also, he said that the idea to detain the Federal Commissioner today was on the sole instigation of the former DG of the DSS, Lawan Daura, who still runs the agency by proxy and convinced Buhari to allow the use of the DSS to clampdown on INEC to force them to do their bidding or sabotage rescheduled election and stop it from holding.
The statement reads as follows:
Buhari planning to sabotage and shift Saturday election with instruction to DSS to massively arrest all INEC top leadership who refused to be compromised. DSS acting Buhari script to detain Prof Ibeanu INEC Commissioner in charge of operations to make room for her sister Amina Zakari to take charge of operations or emerge acting INEC Chairman if Buhari and APC succeed in sabotaging Saturday election and forcing INEC chairman out
It is also very interesting to see that the head chairman of operations, who is reportedly Buhari’s niece, Mrs Amina Zakari is not in the picture in all these discussion of election postponement. Why is she not being reigned in for her lack of competence if the fault came form oeprations and logistics? Why is being sidelined here and not even mentioned by all quarters, rather members of her department are being harassed by DSS and the president.
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This is a grand scale corruption that has been busted in the DSS, the Department of State Secret Service. The five-men gang, also known as the Aso Rock cabal are involved in the looting of N5bn, which was initially slated to be double the amount until the unfortunate sacking of DSS Chief, Lawan Daura by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.
The name of the whistleblower is Mr Jackson Ude, who is not in Nigeria and now wanted by the DSS to secretly come into the country to investigate the DSS treasury without going public to avoid them being exposed in this critical time of the election.
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According to Mr Ude, the DSS want him to fly into Nigeria any day or anytime and he would be given unfettered access to the DSS account department to scrutinise their finances .
The four family members of President Buhari who are involved in this grand case of corruption are the ex-Chief of DSS, Mr Lawan Daura, Babagana Kingibe, Abba Kyari and Isa Funtua and Mamma Daura.
According to Mr Jackson Ude, these five men have also vowed to make sure that Buhari is returned back to power in this next Saturday election. This obviously is to help them be in charge and permit them more time and years to loot more.
They do not want the whistleblower to go public citing obvious national security but Mr Ude has refused bluntly and wants to drop the ball on them.
According to Mr Ude, he has been called thrice in a day by the DSS and he said that they are panicking because they know that he has detailed information about the scandal in the agency and they obviously do not want him to go public with his facts.
At some point the DSS via the Director of Operations want to know who is paying him to expose them. The DSS claimed that he is jeopardising the national security and heating up the polity especially now during the elections.
Few months before the former DSS Chief was sacked by the Acting President, he had prepared the budget for the DSS and he created a special package for the operation of the secret police for the 2019 general elections. Perhaps, a ploy to embezzle this said amount using a false secret police operation unit.
Lawan Daura requested for N10 billion to be spent by the DSS for the elections. Initally, Mr Lawan wanted N7bn but Alhaji Babagana Kingibe, Isa Funtua asked him to inflate it to N10bn. He did inflate it to amount they requested and the N10bn budget was approved.
Not long after the budget was approved, Mr Lawan and DSS incident of invasion of the Senate caused the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo to axe him. This created a problem for the five-men gang, who now have a problem on how to extricate their loot from the accounts of the agency.
The sacking of Mr Lawan by Yemi Osinbajo got the cabal very angry because this has made it difficult for them to remove their loot from the DSS budget as previously planned. Also, if someone else who is not the original clique to the plan takes over the leader of the DSS, it will be impossible for them to take the money out.
When the Bayelsa-born Matthew Sayeifa was appointed, the cabal never wanted him to last in that position because they had their eyes on the N10bn loot. So, they did everything to get him sacked as soon a Buhari, who was on medical vacation in London returned back to Aso Rock.
Few weeks back, Mr Lawan Daura launched a plan and made a move to get a cut from the N10bn and he made the request to the current DSS DG Bichi and was rebuffed. He then went to the trio Abba Kyari, Babagana Kingibe, Isa Funtua who then summoned Bichi and demanded for the loot.
DSS Boss, Bichi still put up a resistance but Babagana Kingibe, Isa Funtua and Lawan Daura and exerted more pressure on him. Helpless Bichi finally agreed to offer them N2bn. The trio refused bluntly rather asked for N5bn. Mr Bichi caved in and directed the release of N5 billion to the cabal. They smiled away with N5bn meant for the election budget for the DSS.
Abba Kyari, Babagana Kingibe, Isa Funtua and Lawan Daura have all shared the N5 billion leaving the entire DSS with only N5 billion for election operations.
The current DSS boss, Mr Bichi is threatening to resign due to this scandal. The rank and file of the agency are all grumbling .
The top officers are doing their best to suppress the story to avoid destroying the morale of the DSS officers.
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The Department of State Services (DSS) has reportedly released the Aide De Camp (ADC) to Wife of President Muhammadu Buhari, Aisha.
The First Lady had, last Friday, accused her ADC, Sani Baba-Inna of fraud.
Mrs Buhari said Mr Baba-Inna collected cash gifts totalling N2.5 billion from politicians and businesses over three years but kept it to himself. She asked the police to retrieve the money, and publicly asked persons who may have given money to Mr Baba-Inna to demand same from him.
However, police investigations, according to sources in the police, failed to trace such huge amount to the ADC.
Dissatisfied, Mrs Buhari reportedly asked the DSS to take over the case.
Spokesperson of the service, Peter Afunanya, who confirmed the arrest to PREMIUM TIMES on Tuesday said investigation was in progress.
Mr Baba-Inna’s elder brother, Farouq Baba-Inna, told PREMIUM TIMES Thursday afternoon that he has been released.
“He has just been released and I am on my way to see him,” he said.
A call to Mr Afunanya was not answered and is yet to be returned as at press time. (The Sun)
President Muhammadu Buhari has approved with effect from 14th September, the appointment of Yusuf Magaji Bichi, as the new Director General of the Department of State Service (DSS)
According to the pres release from Presidency, the appointee is a core Secret Service operative.
They also released his academic background and all courses he attended.
According to the statement, Bichi attended Danbatta Secondary School, the Kano State College of Advanced Studies and the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria where he graduated with a degree in Political Science.
This appointment is against the backdrop of suspicions that Buhari will not accept the acting DSS DG, Mr Matthew Seyeifa, due to the fact that he is from the South-South. Those who had this suspicion will now have more reason to believe that Buhari does not want anyone from the Southern Nigeria to head any position as sensitive as DSS or other important security post.
In th course of his career, Mr Bichi has worked as the State Director of Security in Jgawa, Niger, Sokoto, and Abia States.
He has undergone training in intelligence processing analysis, agent handling recruitment and intelligence processing in the UK, as well as strategic training at the National Defence College
The new DSS chief comes to the job with skills in intelligence gathering, research analysis, conflict management, general investigation, risk and vulnerability operations, counter intelligence and protective operation and human resources management.
Mr Bichi was at various times the Director, National Assembly Liaison, (National War College), Director at National Headquarters in the Directorate of Security Enforcement, Directorate of Intelligence, Directorate of Inspection and Directorate of Administration and Finance.
He also served as the Director of States Service Academy.