Taraba Killings: Death Toll Hits 42

The death toll in weekend’s Tiv farmers’ killings in Taraba State has risen to 42, it was learnt yesterday.
The hacking to death of the farmers by suspected Fulani militia in Gassol Local Government Area has spilled to many Tiv villages, in spite of police and military presence in the area.
The meeting by Commissioner of Police Yunas Babas, State President of Tiv Cultural and Social Association (TCSA) Goodman Dahida, President of Fulani’s Miyati-Alla, the Lamdo Gassol and security agencies to broker peace was fruitless
Police, soldiers, Dahida and the Senior Special Assistant to Taraba State Governor, Hon. Jerry Tyolanga, confirmed the rise in death toll.
Tiv homes were set ablaze, with smokes still billowing when The Nation visited the troubled area yesterday afternoon.
Six persons were gunned down in Sabon Gari; 16 were slain in other villages. Among them were three women, eye-witnesses said.
Four trucks conveyed bodies, which were killed. The bodies recovered from the “bush villages”. They were being taken to neighbouring Benue State.
There was mass exodus of Tiv from Dan-Anacha –fleeing Taraba to Benue State where a bulk of their ethnic group resides.
The displaced persons looked frustrated, most of them carrying heavy loads, children and domesticated animals but without transportation fares. Some were loudly crying and wailing over the loss of their loved ones.
The renewed attack and killings of Tiv farmers began on Saturday in Dan-Anacha, whose name was recently changed to Kwararafa, as the state was busy at a “Peace Concert” in a stadium in Jalingo –the state capital – organised by Governor Darius Ishaku.
Police spokesman David Mishal, who confirmed the killings, was still being expected to brief the press on the details yesterday.
He described the incident as “undercover attacks where you invade someone’s home and attack him when there is no war going on”.
Governor Darius Ishaku is seen by the Tiv in Taraba as a peace maker. They held a meeting in Jalingo yesterday on the killings, which are raising national concerns.
The Tiv community alleged that yesterday’s killings followed a meeting between the Lamdo Gassol and the Fulani militias. “The meeting started by midnight and lasted till 4:00am when the militias began to invade Tiv homes,” one of the displaced farmers, who is injured, said.

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Taraba killings death toll hits 42

Kafanchan: Curfew In 2 Kaduna LGs Following Protest Over Killings

A 24-hour curfew has been imposed on Jema’a and Kaura local government areas (LGAs) of Kaduna State.

This followed a protest in Kafanchan over killings and destruction of communities in the Southern Kaduna area.

Thousands of the protesters carried placards calling on the government to put a stop to the attacks.

Trouble broke out, however when the protesters were challenged by another group from the area.

Armed mobile policemen came to the place around 10 a.m. and started firing tear gas into the crowd.

The Interim Management Committee (IMC)  chairman of Kaura local government, Mr. Alex Musa Iya,  said he and his colleague in Jema’a LG, Dr. Humble Katuka, had to take steps to restrict movement for now due to the security situation.

He said: “It is true that IMC chairman of Jema’a LGA has declared a 24-hour curfew on the entire Jema’a LGA with emphasis on Kafanchan. After studying the situation, I thought it expedient to also restrict movement in Kaura for 24 hours due to the proximity of the two areas. I am happy to inform you that there is calm everywhere now. We shall study the situation and take all the necessary steps to ensure peace and security. The intention is not to hurt anyone. We call on our people to please co-operate in the interest of everyone.”

Earlier in a telephone interview said the Jema’a Local Government interim chairman, Bege Katuka, said, “As a responsible government, it was incumbent on the council to take proactive measures to guarantee the safety of lives and property.”

He urge the people to be calm and remain indoors until the situation improved.

Spokesperson of the youths who carried out the protest yesterday, Mr Nathan Chaweson, expressed regret over ‘the high level of impunity’ exhibited by the perpetuators of the various attacks in Southern Kaduna in recent times ‘even with the presence of security operatives’ at flashpoints.

“Throughout the period the attacks lasted, no single arrest had been recorded. We are pushed to the wall to question the innocence of the government in what has been happening,” Chaweson said.

He challenged the government to rise to the responsibility of protecting lives and property in all parts of the state to give everyone a sense of belonging.

Credit: dailytrust

Rivers Poll: UK, US, Germany, France Call For Probe Of Killings

The United Kingdom High Commissioner to Nigeria, Paul Arkwright and his United States, France, Germany and the European Union counterparts, Messrs Stuart Symington, Denys Guaer, Bernhard Schlagheck and Micheal Arrion respectively, yesterday called on the federal government to conduct a transparent investigation into the killings of innocent Nigerians during the just concluded Rivers re-run election.

Also yesterday, The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) vowed that it would get to the root of incidences of malfeasance involving its staff, politicians and some security agents during the just concluded re-run elections in Rivers State.

This was contained in a statement, signed by the Deputy Press and Public Relations Officer of the British High Commission, Jamila Fagge, on behalf of the five envoys resident in Abuja.

The envoys also alleged wide rigging of the December 10, parliamentary re-run election in the state.

The countries who claimed to have been following proceedings before and during the election indicted some staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as well as personnel of security agencies.

They however did not mention any politician or political party as a beneficiary of the rigging.

The envoys called for a full scale investigation of the allegations as well as the death of some civilians and police officials with a view to bringing them to book and serve as deterrent to others in future elections.

Read More: thisdaylive

We’ve Paid Some Aggrieved Herdsmen To Stop Killings In Southern Kaduna– El-Rufai

Kaduna State Governor Mallam Nasir el-Rufai has said his government has traced some violent, aggrieved herdsmen to their countries and paid them to stop the killings of Southern Kaduna natives and the destruction of their communities saying that the renewed violence is carried out by bandits.

El-Rufai made this known while fielding questions from some select Journalists in his office in Kaduna.

He said: “For southern Kaduna, we didn’t understand what was going on and we decided to set up a committee under Gen. Martin Luther Agwai (rtd) to find out what was going on there. What was established was that the root of the problem has a history starting from the 2011 post election violence.

“Fulani herdsmen from across Africa bring their cattle down towards Middle Belt and Southern Nigeria. The moment the rains starts around March, April, they start moving them up to go back to their various communities and countries. “Unfortunately, it was when they were moving up with their cattle across Southern Kaduna that the elections of 2011 took place and the crisis trapped some of them.

“Some of them were from Niger, Cameroon, Chad, Mali and Senegal. Fulanis are in 14 African countries and they traverse this country with the cattle. “So many of these people were killed, cattle lost and they organised themselves and came back to revenge.

“So a lot of what was happening in Southern Kaduna was actually from outside Nigeria. We got a hint that the late Governor Patrick Yakowa got this information and he sent someone to go round some of these Fulani communities, but of course after he died, the whole thing stopped. That is what we inherited. But the Agwai committee established that.

“We took certain steps. We got a group of people that were going round trying to trace some of these people in Cameroon, Niger republic and so on to tell them that there is a new governor who is Fulani like them and has no problem paying compensations for lives lost and he is begging them to stop killing.

“In most of the communities, once that appeal was made to them, they said they have forgiven. There are one or two that asked for monetary compensation. They said they have forgiven the death of human beings, but want compensation for cattle. We said no problem, and we paid some. As recently as two weeks ago, the team went to Niger republic to attend one Fulani gathering that they hold every year with a message from me.”

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http://www.vanguardngr.com/2016/12/weve-paid-fulani-stop-killings-southern-kaduna-el-rufai/

PMB, Yari Meet Over Killings In Zamfara

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday met behind closed doors with Zamfara State Governor, Abdulaziz Yari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja over the recent killings and abductions in his state.

Speaking with State House correspondents at the end of the meeting, Yari disclosed that he came to brief the president about the security situation in his state which has reached alarming proportions.

He said, “As you are aware, some villages in Zamfara State have been under attacks by bandits and the President has carried out his constitutional responsibility by sending security men to the state.

“So I am here to brief him on the security situation in the state. The operation is ongoing and is going on successfully. I am rushing back there to visit the troops in order to boast their morale.

“I will be with them throughout the week. In this kind of situation, you have to be with the people in order to show them that you are concerned as a leader.

“I believe the security agencies are doing their best and we will continue as government to give them the support needed to make the operation successful.

He expressed hope that the military will remain there for longer time adding that the state is  ready to take care of their logistics.

“The problem we have is that the state is surrounded by forests. The military men there are currently in about six camps. We hope they will stay there for a while.

“We thank God that the 40 people are back with their families. We have retrieved them from their abductors and we have returned them to their families without any injury. We also did not pay any ransom,” he added.

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Foreign Nomads Responsible for Farmers, Herdsmen Clashes – FG

Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Engineer Babachir David Lawal, Thursday revealed that nomads from outside Nigeria have migrated into the country and that they are the ones perpetuating most of the crises among farmers and herders across the country.

He also reiterated the decision of the present administration to establish ranches and grazing reserves across the country as solution to the incessant clashes between cattle rearers and local farmers.

The SGF who gave the revelation when he received in audience, a delegation of Tabital Pulako Njode Jam Foundation, led by the Chairman, Alhaji Abdul Bali, assured that government will do the needful to enlighten herdsmen on how to make cattle rearing more profitable by utilising the ranches and reap other social and political benefitsthat such settlements will offer.

In another development, the SGF assured the people of the North East that government agencies responsible for the rehabilitation of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the region, do not discriminate, in the provision of relief materials to the various states.

According to him, relief items were distributed with a deep sense of equity and fairness, and emphasised that the severity of the hardships of the IDPs in the affected communities and states was the major consideration in the distribution exercise.

He made this clarification in his office when he received a delegation from another group, the Lardin Gabas Elders Forum led by the Chairman Board of Trustees, Captain Paul Tahir.

He explained that rehabilitation efforts in the North-East, apart from the of foods items, tents and building materials, included the reconstruction of schools, hospitals, police stations and barracks.

He said to streamline rehabilitation activities in the region, and accelerate the return of normal life to the North-Eastern states; a Presidential Committee on North-East Initiative (PCNI) will soon be inaugurated by Mr. President.

The Forum, according to the delegation, is ready to work with the Federal Government to ensure that succour is brought to victims of the insurgency. The forum also advocates the return of Christian Religious Studies to school curriculum to teach youths about good moral upbringing, early.

Zamfara ‘Blasphemy’ Killings: What Really Happened

Further details has been obtained of the killings in the Talata Marafa town of Zamfara State, where eight residents were burnt to death by a mob suspected to be students of Abdu Gusau Polytechnic.

Reporters spoke to a resident of Talata Mafara, Salisu Mafara on Tuesday. He said trouble began when a student of the Polytechnic was accused of blasphemy against Prophet Muhammad.

“The young man was a Muslim before he converted to Christianity and fellow students always accused him of saying nasty things about Islam.

“However, he reportedly said terrible things about the prophet and the students around descended on him and he was seriously injured,” he said.

Mr. Mafara said another resident of the town who speaks the same language with the accused student came to his rescue.

“When they noticed that he was not moving at all, they thought he was dead, but one man who is from the same tribe with him now came and took him to hospital in his car.

“When the mob got to know what happened, they now began to rush to the General Hospital. However, that man just dropped the boy in the hospital and left.

“But before the mob could reach the hospital, another young man, who is an indigene of Mafara, but is a boyfriend to the sister of the attacked student, reached the Hospital before them and took away the injured man before the mob got there.

“When they reached the hospital and realised that the injured man was not there they came back to town and when they saw the vehicle used in taking him to the Hospital the first time, they burnt it down.

“They also went to the man’s House and burnt it down with all the occupants inside. About eight people were in the house and they all died,” he said.

Mr. Mafara also said three other persons may have died when security agents opened fire on the crowd that became uncontrollable.

When contacted, the spokesperson of the Police in the state, Mohammed Shehu said a state security council meeting was held immediately after the incident and a dusk-to-dawn curfew imposed.

He also said security was heightened in the town and that everywhere was now calm.

He however, failed to confirm the burning of the house and the killing of occupants.

He said his attention was needed by the Commissioner of Police, Adoge Gabriel, and be abruptly ended the call.

Subsequent efforts to speak with him failed as he did not answer calls or respond to a text message.

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Zamfara ‘Blasphemy’ Killings “Barbaric & Unacceptable”, Buhari Pledges Justice

President Muhammadu Buhari has condemned the killing of at eight persons in Zamfara State on the allegation of “blasphemy”.

A mob, suspected to be students of Abdu Gusau Polytechnic, on Monday descended on a man they accused of blaspheming the Prophet of Islam. They later set those who tried to help him alight.

The attack occurred at Talata Mafara, a town in Zamfara.

Mr. Buhari described the attack as “barbaric and unacceptable”.

Writing on Twitter, the president said he “received news of the mob killings in Zamfara with great dismay”.

“I assure that the law will take its course. My prayers are with the families of the victims,” he said.

Mr. Buhari, who has been widely criticized for failing to speak out or condemn similar attacks in the past, said “Under my watch we will work to ensure that there is no place for violence in the name of religion, ethnicity, or in any guise whatsoever”.

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Half-naked Women Protest Against Killings In Kaduna

Half-naked women on Tuesday protested over alleged night attacks by herdsmen on Ninte village in Godogodo Chiefdom of Jema’a Local Government, Kaduna State.

The women from Ninte and surrounding villages staged the protest at the palace of the Chief of Godogodo.

The women demanded government intervention to stop the alleged increasing cases of night killings, rape, burning of houses by some assailants in the area.

Spokesperson of the protesters, Mrs. Deborah Reuben, accused the government of insensitivity to their plight since the incident started in May.

“The situation is unhealthy as it is no longer safe.

“The government we voted into power has left us at the mercy of armed herdsmen, farms cannot be cultivated in the face of high level of impunity,” she lamented.

Responding, the Chief of Godogodo, Malam Iliya Ajiya appealed to the protesting women to remain calm as everything possible was being done to bring the situation under control.

When contacted, the Interim Chairman of Jema’a local council, Dr. Bege Katukah confirmed to NAN in a telephone interview that security men had been mobilised to the affected community.

NAN learnt that residents of the affected villages have been relocating to Godogodo, Antang and Gidan Waya, for their safety.

Credit: NAN

Nigerian Army Replies Amnesty International On Pro-Biafra Killings

The Nigerian Army has rejected a report by Amnesty International on Friday accusing Nigerian troops of killing at least 17 unarmed pro-Biafra supporters in south eastern states.

Amnesty International said it conducted extensive research on the attacks and could confirm 17 killings, but said the number could be as high as 50.

In a statement following the report, H.A. Gambo, a colonel and deputy director, Army Public Relations, accused Amnesty International of not verifying its claims and seeking to discredit the Nigerian Army.

“The attention of 82 Division Nigerian Army has been drawn to insinuations of misdeed being leveled by Amnesty International against security forces during the MASSOB/IPOB violent protests in Onitsha and environs on 31 May 2016. Accordingly, it is deemed imperative for the wrong and misleading impressions with which the public is being fed to be corrected once and for all,” the statement said.

“The synopsis of occurrence on that fateful day is that elements of MASSOB/IPOB engaged in violent protests which were featured with outright disregard for law and order. In the scenario of anarchy that ensued, the pro-Biafran protesters who had chosen the day to mark the 50th Anniversary of Biafra perpetrated a number of unimaginable atrocities to unhinge the reign of peace, security and stability in several parts of Anambra State.

“A number of persons from the settler communities that hailed from other parts of the country were selected for attack, killed and burnt. 2 personnel of the Nigeria Police were killed, several soldiers were wounded, a Nigeria Police vehicle was completely burnt down while another of the Nigerian Army was vandalized.

“The strategic Niger Bridge at Onitsha was at the verge of being captured particularly with the coordinated reinforcement of the violent protesters from the Asaba end of the Bridge. In addition, wanton destruction of lives and properties were brazenly carried out by the protesters who employed firearms, crude weapons as well as other volatile cocktails such as acid and dynamites. In consequence, law, order and security were grossly threatened across the State and beyond.

“The Nigerian Army in synergy with other security agencies under its constitutional mandates for Military Aid to Civil Authority (MACA) and Military Aid to Civil Power (MACP) acted responsively in order to de-escalate the deteriorating security scenario in-situ. Instructively, the military and other security agencies exercised maximum restraints against the odds of provocative and inexplicable violence that were employed against them by the pro-Biafran protesters.

“The military and of course the other security agencies acted professionally within the extant Rules of Engagement to successful de-escalate the budding anarchy in-situ. It is rather inconceivable for any individual or group to have decided to inundate the general public with an anecdote of unverified narratives in order to discredit the Nigerian Army in the course of carrying out its constitutional duties despite the inexplicable premeditated and unprovoked attacks in the hands of the violent pro-Biafran mob.”

Credit: PremiumTimes

Protest Rocks Asaba Over Herdsmen Killings

Credit: NationalMirror

Herdsmen Sack Benue Community, Take Over Territory

Despite efforts by the Federal and Benue State governments to end clashes between herdsmen and farmers, indications emerged yesterday that Moor, a council ward in Kwande Local Government Area of the state had been sacked by armed herdsmen.
Vanguard learned that the crisis, which dates back to 2013, has left over 100 persons dead, scores sustaining varying degrees of injuries and close to 8,000 displaced.

A source said: “Moor in Kwande Local Government Area is now an occupied territory. Herdsmen have sacked the inhabitants from their ancestral homes and taken over the council

ward.

The crisis started as far back as 2013 and has led to the death of over 100 persons and many others injured.

“All the local government clinics, including 21 primary and secondary schools in the area, have been completely destroyed. The indigenes of the community are refugees in other communities.”

Corroborating the story, the Executive Secretary of the Benue State Emergency Management Agency, SEMA, Mr. Boniface Otese, said the agency had been making concerted efforts to avail the displaced persons necessary relief materials.

When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, Moses Yamu, said police, military and other sister security agencies were working round the clock to ensure that peace and normalcy returned to every trouble spot in the state.

Source: Vanguard

Alleged Killings Of Herdsmen: Group Threatens To Drag IPOB To ICC

The Conference of Minority Tribes of Nigeria (CMTN), has said it will drag the leadership of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) to the International Criminal Court (ICC) at the Hague following the alleged killings of some Fulani herdsmen in Abia State.

The group which condemned the killings of the northerners, described it as a crime against humanity. Recall that bikerings have followed the allegations by the Department of State Services, DSS, Abuja Headquarters, that members of IPOB killed some Fulani herdsmen in Abia State, and dumped them in gutters.

But this allegation, the separatist group, other groups, as well as the Abia State government, has denied, describing it as a lie from the pit of hell. In separate press statements, they condemned the DSS, accusing the nation’s secrete police of wanting to spark another ethnic pogrom in Nigeria.

However, addressing a press conference on Monday, in Abuja, Secretary General of CMTN, Comrade Samson Babalola said these alleged killings marked a new low in what had been cordial relations between ethnic nationalities in Nigeria that have always accepted each other as family. He said other ethnic groups strongly condemned government forces when it clamped down on IPOB’ protests and had even planned sympathy marches in support of IPOB and its leaders that are being detained.

Credit: vanguardngr

Brothers Behead Sister And Parade Her Head In The Name Of Honored Killing

2 Indian brothers decapitated their teenage sister and paraded her severed head through their village because they disapproved of her ‘romantic relationship’ with one of their cousins.

Several people watched in horror as Phool Jehan, 17, was dragged out of her house, severely beaten and beheaded by her 2 brothers this past Monday. They however, did not tell the police what had happened.

The crime was only later reported by a local security guard, one officer explained.

According to Indian Times, Police have been unable to find the two brothers, named Nanhe and Gul Hasan, whose ages are not known. After killing their sister, they left her body on the street as they roamed around the north-Indian village with her head.

According to reports, they shouted: ‘This is what happens as punishment for having an affair.’

Honour killings are common across India, but such brutal slayings are extremely rare. While the brothers are on the run, police have detained Jehan’s cousin to question him, said another police officer.

37 Teachers Died In Kaduna Bomb Blast – NUT president

The National President of the Nigerian Union of Teachers, Micheal Olukoya, says that 37 teachers died in the bomb incident that rocked Sabongari in Kaduna state Two days ago July 7th. The teachers were at the state secretariat to partake in the verification exercise initiated by the government to weed out ghost workers.

While speaking at the Founder’s day of the Nigerian Union of Teachers in Abuja today July 8th, Mr Olukoya said so far, 272 teachers had lost their lives to the various Boko Haram attacks in Borno State alone and that over 19,000  had been displaced in the North East.

End To Boko Haram In Nigeria Is In Sight – President Buhari

President Buhari says that the end of terror group Boko Haram in Nigeria is in sight. He said this in a statement released today July 8th. The statement released by Shehu Garba, SA to President Buhari on Media and Publicity reads in part;

“The president is convinced that with recent increase in troops deployment, improvements in the supply of arms and equipment to the military, as well as the ongoing effort to mobilise greater international cooperation and support, the end of Boko Haram and terrorism in Nigeria is in sight.
He calls on Nigerians to remain vigilant and report any suspicious persons to security agents as his administration continues to give the highest-possible priority to eradicating Boko Haram and ensuring greater security of lives and property across the country “Already, the intensified onslaught by the military on terrorists’ strongholds has led to significant seizures of weapons and vehicles, a blockage of their sources of arms and ammunition, and a decimation of their fighting men. President Buhari assures Nigerians of the ability and readiness of the country’s armed forces and security agencies to contain the frantic resort by the terrorists to attacks on soft targets such as crowds and places of worship.”

‘ISIS Can Go F**k Themselves’ – Shaggy Says His Music Can Stop Their Brutality

Reggae star Shaggy has called out brutal terror group,ISIS ,saying listening to his music can stop them from carrying out their brutal beheadings

The 46-year-old Jamaican who actually served as a US marine in Iraq during the first Gulf War – suggested that Western armies should find a way to pump his music into ISIS terror camps, guaranteeing it would inject some emotion into them.

During an promotional interview with the Miami New Times, when asked if his new singe titled “Go f**k Yourself “was aimed at anybody in particular,Shaggy said

‘ISIS can go f**k themselves. That’s some crazy shit what they’re doing. It’s horrible,
man. I can’t see… I don’t get that much hate. I just don’t get that level of evil. I can’t understand it,’ he said.If you’re able to cut a man’s head off, you’re sick. But right music evokes emotion. So if they’re listening to Shaggy music or reggae music, they’re not going to want to cut somebody’s head off,'(More below)
‘There’re two thing you want to do when you listen to reggae: You get somebody pregnant, or you’re f**king high. High people don’t want to kill nothing; they want to love. They need to bag some Jamaican weed and distribute it amongst ISIS. I guarantee there won’t be any more wars out there.

ISIS Executes 2 Media Activists For ‘Working Against Them’ In Syria

ISIS over the weekend released a horrific video showing the execution of two media activists in Raqqa, for allegedly being ‘informants’, speaking against them and handing out anti-Shariah leaflets. In the video, the two men identified as Bashar Abdul Atheem and Faisal Hasan Al Habib, who were local residents in Raqqa, were first interrogated before they were tied to a tree and shot dead. ISIS says it’s a warning to other activists working against them. More photos below…

See the Moment ISIS Child Killers Brutally Shot Dead 25 Syrian Soldiers In Front Of Bloodthirsty Crowd

ISIS has released a significant new execution video from the historic city of Palmyra, in the Syrian desert. Child executioners are shown in the video being forced to brutally slaughter a group of more than 25 regime soldiers.

The video shows the soldiers lined up on their knees on the stage of the Roman amphitheatre, which had formerly been used for an annual festival in the city. A baying crowd of men and boys gathered in the restored ruin waiting for the slaughter, many wearing military uniforms and headscarves.

Behind each condemned man stands a child executioner, all wearing desert camouflage and brown
bandanas, many of whom appear to be no older than 12 or 13 years old.

ISIS fighters can be seen standing or sitting on top of the ancient ruins, watching over the crowd as they wait for the slaughter.  A leader speaks to the audience, in front of an enormous ISIS flag draped across the back of the stage. And on a command, the condemned soldiers are killed simultaneously with a shot to the head.

ISIS captured the historic city on May 21, and has been systematically destroying the city’s treasured ancient monuments. They are known for using children – dubbed ‘caliphate cubs’ – as suicide bombers, soldiers and executioners in their attempts to instill fear across Iraq and Syria.

Authorities fear that the use of children as soldiers and suicide bombers will only increase in the coming months.

DailyMailUK

Graphic Photo From The Jos Bomb Blast At Yan-Taya Mosque Yesterday

This is a photo from the deadly bomb blast that rocked the Yan-Taya mosque in Jos yesterday.  The blast had happened as a sermon on the occasion of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan was going on. Another blast occurred at Bauchi Road, a major thoroughfare in Jos that is also in an area where many Muslim families reside. At least 15 people were killed and 20 others were injured in the attacks.

May God comfort the grieving, and give our government the courage, wisdom required to meet up with this danger.

Photo credit – Journalist Yiljap Abraham

The Curse Of The Black Skin By Ololade Ajekigbe

Wednesday, the 17th of June saw yet another attack on blacks in the USA. In perhaps the most sordid and confounding killing in recent times, a white male sauntered into a predominantly black church where a group of Christians had come together for bible study, “worshipped” with them for about an hour before unleashing terror on the unsuspecting gathering. It was one attack too many.
The black community in the USA and indeed other parts of the world were yet to recover from the needless killings of 25 year old Freddie Gray, which sparked a series of protests and civil disorder, 50 year of Walter Scott who was shot by a North Charleston Police officer, Micheal Brown, a black teen shot by yet another Police officer in Ferguson, Missouri and Trayvon Martin, the 17 year old African American shot by George Zimmerman, who ended up being acquitted of second-degree murder resulting in protests across US cities, when it was once again dealt a blow that may be the final straw that would break the proverbial camel’s back with the murder of nine members of the Emmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina.
The rise in cases of wanton killings of African Americans in the last couple of years has once again brought to the fore the stark reality that racism and ethnic discrimination which were major issues during the colonial and slave era are still a profound source of concern centuries later. There is still undoubtedly a seemingly unconquerable prejudice against blacks. Prejudice, discrimination and institutional racism continue to affect African Americans. To deny or downplay it is tantamount to living in denial about the state of things. And the trajectory of events does not proffer a soothing prognosis for the future. It is pertinent to ask what the sin of the black man is. Why does the colour of our skin matter so much? Why is it so difficult for people of other races to see blacks as fellow humans who have blood running through their veins just like them?
From the mid 19th century when Africa was called the Dark Continent because very little was known about its history and inhabitants, there has been an air of mystery about all things African that appears to be foreboding to people from the earlier known parts of the world. Despite the fact Africa has evolved from those dark days of totally unknown interiors, dense forests and “mysterious tribes” that were considered dangerous, the portrayal of Africa and Africans by the western world media still leaves plenty to be desired. Mostly bad news and failures get reportage, while successes are greatly downplayed. The average white who has never been to Africa still sees the black man as a backward being who lives on trees or mud houses and has no access to electricity not to talk of the internet. It’s shocking that there are still people who believe this in 2015! Which is why the Blacks who live abroad are thought to be highly privileged to be where they are and are sometimes seen to be undeserving of mixing with the “higher mortals” with fairer skin.
The classification of Africa as a third world continent, and its people as belonging to the lowest rung of the recognition ladder has also not done the black man any favours. Time and time again, Africa has been touted has having the potential to become one of the most powerful economies in the world due to its vast human and natural resources but has consistently failed to live up this billing. It’s greatest bane being its corrupt and selfish leaders who are all about perpetuating themselves in power and enriching themselves to the detriment of the people. This brings to mind the case of the kidnapped girls in North East Nigeria which was handled with kid gloves at the beginning and which cast a damning verdict on the state of security in the country. The call for help from the United States instead of the African Union(AU) as a first resort remains an indictment on the leadership of the AU; an organisation that has the achievement of peace and security in its member countries as part of its objectives.
The perception of Africa as the undisputed laggards of the 21st century has resulted in its people being condemned to being seen as the dregs of the global society. Our darker skin tone compared to other races doesn’t help matters as black is often associated with doom, gloom and all things negative.  Little wonder, more and more blacks are embracing the skin lightening trend – anything to distance themselves from this skin that is a source of constant ridicule.
Our self-esteem issues is also a major factor in the way we are perceived by other races. The average black person is ecstatic and immensely grateful about getting a visa to the UK, as though it were a pass to heaven. The black man treats his fellow black with disdain, but has a subservient disposition to the white man. The government would rather award a contract for road construction to a white man (doesn’t matter if he is Hispanic or Asian) and snub his fellow black who has the pedigree to do a better job just because of the colour of his skin. Sometimes, we are our own worst enemies, as no one can make us feel inferior without our consent.
The KPMG report which projects that Africa’s GDP should reach $2.6 trillion by the year 2020 will only be a mirage if we don’t get our acts together soon enough and attain that seemingly elusive potential that everyone claims that we have. We must as a matter of urgency begin to take our rightful place in the league of global players like China who were once like us. Then we can gradually earn the respect that we deserve and be seen above and beyond the colour of our skin. Either that or we fold our arms and continue to suffer the indignity that we are subjected to on a daily basis.

Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of www.omojuwa.com nor its associates

Boy Drowns Friend For Refusing To Join His Cult Group In Lagos

The police in Lagos state is looking for a suspected cultist named Anu Olokodana (pictured right), for allegedly drowning his childhood friend, 20 year old Adeleke Awosiga (pictured left) for refusing to join his cult group based in Isheri, Ojodu berger in Lagos state.

According to a report by Punch, the incident happened on June 13th during a birthday party for Anu. An argument ensued between the two friends and Anu reportedly twisted Leke’s neck and threw him into a swimming pool inside a hotel in Isheri where he was having his party.

A relative of the deceased who spoke on condition of anonymity said:

“The suspect, Olokodana, is popularly called T-Fire. He is a cult member and he was at the party with other member of his cult group. Adeleke was also there to celebrate his friend’s birthday. As the party went on, a disagreement ensued between the two. Both men have been childhood friends, but their point of disagreements had always been over the cult membership. The suspect had always persuaded his friend to join his cult group, but the latter was not interested. On that Saturday, Olokodana invited many of his friends, including the deceased, to a hotel in the Isheri area to celebrate his birthday. The young men drank and had fun till dawn. The trouble started at about 4.30am. The next thing we heard was that Leke (Awosiga) had been drowned by Olokodana, and all his cult members had fled. We are still in shock over the matter.”he said

Also speaking, a resident in the area identified as Alake said:

“Olokodana’s girlfriend, identified only as Rashidat, at about 4am, started dancing with another cult member. Adeleke also requested to dance with her, but she declined and asked, ‘Are you one of us?’ The deceased felt insulted, and replied that he was older than her. Other cult members got angry and pushed Adeleke out of the party hall. Olokodana also warned his friend not to go back to the hall. So, Awosiga stayed at the hotel’s swimming pool and started threatening the cult members. Olokodana went to the swimming pool area, twisted his friend’s neck and pushed him into the pool. That was how he drowned.”he said

The case was reported at the Isheri Police station and the family members along with the police were able to recover Adeleke’s corpse which has since been deposited at the Yaba morgue.

Spokesperson of the Lagos state police command, Kenneth Nwosu confirmed the incident and said further investigations are ongoing.

Boko Haram On Rampage In Borno, Kills 37 In Remote Villages

Boko Haram terrorists on Wednesday stormed about six villages in Damboa local government area of Borno State, killing at least 37 persons and torching hundreds of houses, security sources and witnesses said.

Those who survived the wild attack of the terrorists that drove in in four-wheel trucks and shooting indiscriminately in the air, were left with serious injuries.

A member of the youth vigilante, Civilian-JTF, Ahmed Ajimi, who spoke to our reporter by phone from Biu town said, “about 37 persons were killed when the Boko Haram terrorists attacked Koshifa, Matangale, Buraltuma, Darmanti, Almeri and Burmari villages of Damboa local government on Wednesday night.

Ajimi was amongst the few male youths that were lucky to escape the attack that forced him and many others to flee to Biu, 100km away from Damboa.

He said some members of the youth vigilante group and himself had to return back to the affected villages on Thursday where they met the entire villages totally burnt down and recovered about 37 corpses.

“What we saw in the villages was really horrifying”, said Ajimi.

“Unlike before when they would gather people and open fire on them, the terrorists this time around, announced their arrival with sporadic shootings and throwing of what looked like petrol bombs on houses, which resulted in several burnt houses.”

Damboa is about 85 km south of Maiduguri, Borno State capital.

Though many communities around and within Damboa had been sacked and residents forced to relocate to IDP camps in Maiduguri, these farming families still inhabit some villages around Damboa, especially those not far away from Biu local government area.

Killings: El-Rufai Appeals For Calm Among Supporters

Kaduna State Governor-elect, Malam Nasir el-Rufai, has asked members and supporters of the All Progressives Congress in the state to remain steadfast and refused to be provoked by common enemies.

El-Rufai spoke at the funeral of his slained Campaign Coordinator, Markus Ishaya.

Ishaya was killed by gunmen at his Atuku Kasa area of Jema’am Local Government Area of the state last week.

He was a local coordinator of the governor-elect at the Atuku Ward during the campaign.

The Police had confirmed the incident, adding that investigation had commenced.

The Governor-elect, who was quoted by his spokesman, Mr. Samuel Aruwan, to have  spoken through his Deputy, Bala Barnabas, shortly after the funeral of the slain coordinator on Saturday.

El-Rufai noted that rather than seeking to revenge the killing of Ishaya, the relevant law enforcement agencies must be allowed to perform their statutory roles.

He cautioned his teeming supporters and the people of the state not to allow those he described as “evil doers” to rob them of the opportunity of living together in peace and harmony in the state.

According to the statement, El-Rufai appealed  for peace and calm among the people of the area in particular and the state in general.

The statement read in part, “We received the news of Markus’ murder with pain but we pray that the Almighty God will grant him eternal rest.

“Though he was cut in his prime, he exhibited courage, fearlessness and commitment in the struggle for a better Nigeria. He resisted injustice and stood firm even in the heat of the general elections.

“Markus did his best to uphold democratic principles. He lived a short life but wrote his name in gold and died upholding the common good.

“What happened is evil and a desecration of human life. We will not relent in demanding justice, not minding how long it will take.”

Credit – Punch Ng

African People’s Union Declares Citizen Economic Sanctions Against South Africa

The Position of the African People’s Union on the decades-long and ongoing xenophobia in South Africa:

Whereas it has come to the notice of the people of Africa that blacks in South Africa still live in apartheid-like conditions, in ghettos called ‘townships.’

Whereas it is realized that in spite of South Africa’s booming economy there are limited opportunities for blacks, leading to animalistic competition.

Whereas it is understood that the ‘townships’ ghettos for blacks lacks reasonable security for life and property. Whereas we do realize that xenophobia in South Africa was initiated as government policy of the ANC since 2002.

Whereas we do recognize that the subhuman style of mass deportations of migrant foreign workers since 1994 bearing all brutality and insolence of colonial operations deployed against blacks during apartheid, directly contributed to the development of systemic xenophobia in nation. *Lindela.

Whereas we do recognize that the “community policing” and spying provision in the 2002 Immigration act adopted by the ANC in 2005 directly promotes and endorses xenophobia.

To This Effect:
The African people’s Union expects the South African government to review its Immigration laws towards protecting and not persecuting foreigners.

We expect the South African government to act to protect foreign nationals in the state.

We expect the South African government to act to protect South African blacks in the townships.

We expect the South African government to provide real opportunities for African blacks in the townships.

The African People’s Union Resolves:
To embark on widespread citizen economic sanctions against the South African government and corporate business interests via citizen boycotts.

To continue to promote citizen sanctions against the Pretoria government and South African big Corp. until there is actual policy change and real effort to improve the living conditions in the townships and the security of lives and property of citizens and foreigners is treated as high priority.

To this effect, all Africans and friends of Africa are encouraged to boycott South African big Corp. products and South African government operations:

Boycott their MTN phone networks

Boycott South African Airlines

Boycott South Africa’s DSTV

Boycott ShopRite stores

El-Rufai To NHRC: Probe Southern Kaduna Killings

The Kaduna State All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate, Malam Nasir el-Rufai yesterday called for thorough investigation of killings occurring in Southern Kaduna since 2011.

el-Rufai who was speaking to newsmen regarding his meeting with the team of investigators from National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) said there is need for an independent, high-powered commission of inquiry to investigate the whole mystery regarding the killings.

He called for the prosecution of any person found culpable for the killings.

He further argued that instead of sincere condemnation and quest to contain the killings, those manipulating religion for political power are presently exploiting the situation as basis for consolidating power.

el Rufai said, “I have said it and will continue to say it loud and clear. I will not say a lie because I want votes but the fact remains that I will never tolerate such killings as a governor. I cannot sit down and see our citizenry being slaughtered in their sleep.

“That is why I made my position clear last week. For over 4,000 people to be killed without a single arrest or prosecution shows there is insensitivity and negligence on many sides.”

It is the same thing happening in the Birnin-Gwari and Giwa areas where robberies and cattle-rustling are taking lives and property.

“There is urgent need for an independent, high-powered commission of inquiry to carry out thorough investigations. The commission should comprise national and international security agencies. We cannot be groping in the dark while such criminality and desecration of human lives is going on without seeking to crush such evil.

“It is important because there are all kinds of mischievous and politically motivated conspiracy theories being advanced for political exploitation.”

el-Rufai, who reiterated his stand against political violence, said, “I am deeply committed to non-violent politicking. I have never supported violence; it is against my principle and conviction. Politics is not a do or die matter. For us, politics is about service and how to make Kaduna state great again. We value social justice, good governance and real development. We seek to build a state where togetherness and harmony will abound.”

Read the Account of People who Lived in “Boko Haram State”

Boko Haram says it is building an Islamic state that will revive the glory days of northern Nigeria’s medieval Muslim empires, but for those in its territory life is a litany of killings, kidnappings, hunger and economic collapse.

The Islamist group’s five-year-old campaign has become one of the deadliest in the world, with around 10,000 people killed last year, according to the Council on Foreign Relations. Hundreds, mostly women and children, have been kidnapped.

It remains the biggest threat to the stability of Africa’s biggest economy ahead of a vote on Feb. 14 in which President Goodluck Jonathan will seek re-election.

But while it has matched Islamic State in Syria and Iraq in its brutality — it beheads its enemies on camera — it has seriously lagged in the more mundane business of state building.

“The Islamic state is a figment of their imagination. They are just going into your house and saying they have taken over,” said Phineas Elisha, government spokesman for Adamawa state, one of three states under emergency rule to fight the insurgency.

Unlike its Middle East counterparts wooing locals with a semblance of administration, villagers trapped by Boko Haram face food shortages, slavery, killing and a lock down on economic activity, those who escaped say.

“(They) have no form of government,” Elisha, who saw the devastation caused by Boko Haram after government forces recaptured the town of Mubi in November.

Boko Haram, which never talks to media except to deliver jihadist videos to local journalists, could not be reached for comment.

Boko Haram’s leaders talk about reviving one of the West African Islamic empires that for centuries prospered off the Saharan trade in slaves, ivory and gold, but they demonstrate little evidence of state building.

In August a man saying he was Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau — the military says it killed Shekau — issued a video declaring a “Muslim territory” in Gwoza, by the Cameroon border.

There were echoes of Islamic State’s proclaimed caliphate in Iraq and Syria two months earlier. Boko Haram controls an area just over 30,000 square km of territory, about the size of Belgium, according to a Reuters calculation based on security sources and government data.

But while in Syria, after initially brutal takeovers, Islamic State has tried to win over communities, those who escaped Boko Haram say the rebels do little for them beyond forcing them to adopt their brand of Islam on pain of death.

“They provide raw rice to cook, the rice that they stole from the shops. They provide a kettle and … scarves to cover up the women,” said Maryam Peter from Pambla village.

“People are going hungry. They are only feeding on corn and squash. No meat, nothing like that. The insurgents are not providing anything else,” she added.

Maryam said most daily interactions with the militants involved them questioning villagers on their movements and forbidding them from trying to escape — a rule she managed to flout when she fled a week ago.

A government-run camp in a former school is now her home, along with 1,000 others, where mothers cook on outdoor fires while children run around. Some 1.5 million people have been rendered homeless by the war, Oxfam says.

And those the militants kill, they often fail to bury. The first thing the Nigerian Red Cross has to do when a town falls back into government hands is clear the corpses, Aliyu Maikano, a Red Cross official, told Reuters.

After the army recaptured Mubi in November, Maikano had to cover his nose to avoid the stench of rotting corpses.

Those still alive “were starved for food, water, almost everything there. There’s no drinking water because (in) most of the wells there you’ll find dead bodies,” Maikano said.

Many residents looked tattered and malnourished, and some were unable to speak.

“They are heartless. ISIS (Islamic State) is a kind of organised group, it’s a business. These guys are not.”

A former resident of Mubi said the rebels had renamed the town “Madinatul Islam” or “City of Islam”.

But when government spokesman Phineas Elisha walked into the Emir’s palace after its recapture, everything had been looted, even the windows and doors.

“Mubi was a ghost town … Virtually all the shops were looted.” he said. It took him hours to find a bottle of water.

Sometimes the rebels simply loot the unprotected villages and hide out in bush camps, security sources say. Murna Philip, who escaped the occupied town of Michika five months ago, said a few dozen fighters had occupied an abattoir, a school and a lodge, but little else.

To survive under their watch you have to pretend to support them, said Andrew Miyanda, who escaped the rebels last week, walking for days to the Benue river.

“They would write Jama’atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’Awati Wal-Jihad (Boko Haram’s full name) on their trouser legs in marker or the back of their shirts,” he said. “You had to turn up your trousers with the marker on to show that you are a member.”

Buildings were torched and boys were abducted for “training”, he said, a practice reminiscent of Uganda’s Lord’s Resistance Army.

Slowly, with the help of traditional hunters armed with home made guns and a reputation for magic powers, government forces have pushed Boko Haram out of some of its southern possessions.

Morris Enoch, a leader of the hunters, says they found an arsenal of military weapons: rocket launchers, machine guns, dynamite, anti-aircraft guns and grenades. The rebels rarely leave behind much else.

Credit: Reuters