While the ban on motorcycles and tricycles by the Lagos State government in 15 local councils continues to bite hard on affected operators, it has brought opportunities and relief to others. One of such is Egbunna Sandra, a rider with Gokada, whose interview on the okada ban after a protest at the weekend went viral. She has been gifted a car to enable her to operate as an Uber driver.
In the viral video, Sandra, a National Diploma (ND) graduate of accounting at Yaba College of Technology in Lagos, had revealed that being a rider with Gokada was her only source of livelihood and she did it because she didn’t want to venture into prostitution. Sandra also explained why she stopped searching for jobs. According to her, the N20,000 she earned daily with Gokada is what some employers pay per month. The footage caught the attention of the founder of Kokun Foundation, a non-profitable organization, Adedeji Olukokun, who sought for her contact on his Instagram page. On Tuesday, Olukokun shared a video where he presented Sandra with a Toyota Corolla 2004 model car.
Insecurity: CAN, NSCIA Clash, US Asks FG To Protect Nigerians
The United States has advised the Federal Government to do more in protecting Nigerians and humanitarian organisations that are assisting the country in the face of activities of Boko Haram insurgents and other religious and ethnic violence. The US Secretary of State, Michael Pompeo, made the call in Washington DC on Tuesday during a joint media briefing he had with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama, after the US-Nigeria Bi-national Commission meeting. Pompeo made the call amidst increasing attacks by Boko Haram insurgents on aid workers and residents of the North-East as well as the rising killings by bandits in other parts of the country, particularly, Niger, Zamfara and Katsina states. Also on insecurity, the Presidency and the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs on Wednesday hit back at the Christian Association of Nigeria over its attack on the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), who on Tuesday said insurgents had killed more Muslims than Christians. But CAN on Wednesday insisted that the NSCIA could not exonerate Boko Haram as an Islamic organisation. Buhari, had in an op-ed published in a United States-based magazine, Christianity Today, said Christians were not the primary targets of the insurgents.
Chopper Shot, 250 Killed In Police, Bandits Forest Battle
The police on Wednesday took the battle to the bandits who have been terrorizing the people by killing, maiming and kidnapping. The Special Operatives of Operation Puff Adder of the police led the onslaught on the bandits in the Kaduna forest. They were supported by the special forces of the police Air Wing. The bandits retaliated by firing shots using sophisticated anti-aircraft riffles and General Purpose Machine Gun (GPMG) at the police helicopter which was providing aerial and intelligence cover to the special forces. The police said no fewer than 250 bandits and terrorists were killed. The pilot and co-pilot of the helicopter sustained injuries. But there was no independent confirmation of the casualty figure. Recounting the battle on Wednesday, Police spokesman Frank Mba, a deputy commissioner, said the daring offensive operation successfully neutralised over 250 high-profile members of the Ansaru Terror Group. He added: The operation which commenced in the early hours of today, 5th February, 2020, was carried out by a combined team of operatives of Operation Puff Adder made up of the Police Mobile Force (PMF), Counter Terrorism Unit (CTU), Special Forces, Intelligence Response Team (IRT), Special Tactical Squad (STS) and Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS). The operation was necessitated by actionable intelligence linking terror and criminal elements in the super camp to series of terror-related violence, kidnappings, gun-running, cattle rustling and other heinous crimes across the country.
˜Why U.S. Attached Conditions To Return Of $308m Abacha Loot”
In spite of President Muhammadu Buhari winning the 2018 African Union (AU) Anti-Corruption Champion Award, the United States seems not to trust the Nigerian government to properly utilise the $308 million Gen. Sanni Abacha’s loot stashed away in Jersey for which return agreement was signed recently. Specifically, the agreement which the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami, signed on behalf of Nigeria, tied the return of the looted $308 million to three major projects spread across Nigeria’s three recognised regions after independence. The projects are the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway (Western Region), Abuja-Kano Road (Northern Region), and Second Niger Bridge (Eastern Region). Negotiations for the return of the stolen assets, which began in 2018, according to the agreement, specifically laid out who will manage the assets and the various organisations that would also monitor the expenditure of the funds to ensure they are not diverted for other purposes. Although the Federal Government might have listed these projects while signing the agreement, the Buhari administration voted money for the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway and the Second Niger Bridge in previous budgetary allocations.