Full Text Of President Buhari’s Speech At The 71st Session Of The UN General Assembly

The President of the General Assembly His Excellency Mr. Peter Thomson

The Secretary General of the United Nations Mr. Ban Ki-moon

Your Excellencies Heads of State and Government,

Distinguished Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen

Mr. President,
1. Let me, on behalf of the Government and People of Nigeria, congratulate you on your well-deserved election as the President of the 71st General Assembly. I assure you of Nigeria’s support in steering the affairs of the General Assembly in the next one year. I take the opportunity to also express my appreciation to your predecessor Mr. Mogens Lykketoft, for the achievements recorded during his tenure.

Mr. President,
2. Last year, I presented my first address to the General Assembly after my assumption of office as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Indeed, it was a remarkable year, which not only celebrated the gains of the Millennium Development Goals, but also witnessed the adoption of the 2030 agenda on Sustainable Development.

3. These landmark achievements by the global community, will no doubt build a more prosperous, all inclusive world. We must work together to liberate humanity from poverty, save our planet from the devastation of Climate Change and rid the world of terrorism for a more peaceful and prosperous future.

4. We must remain committed to taking bold steps to transform our world. The Sustainable Development Goals underscore the imperative for our collective will towards finding enduring and sustainable solutions to addressing global disparities. It is in the light of our appreciation of the enormity of the task before us, that I welcome the theme of this Assembly, ‘Sustainable Development Goals; a Universal Push to Transform the World.’

Mr. President,
5. Nigeria as a developing country has been adversely affected by the global economic downturn. We are, however, undeterred and have embarked on a wide range of reforms in our efforts to diversify our economy and shift emphasis to mining, agriculture, industrialization, infrastructure development and the creation of the enabling environment for Foreign Direct Investment.

6. Our strategic objective is to stimulate the economy, restore growth and accelerate recovery. In doing this, we are taking measures to reduce the cost of governance and increase expenditure on infrastructure and ensure environmental best practices.

Mr. President,
7. Fighting corruption remains a cardinal pillar of our administration. Corruption freezes development, thereby undermining the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. I am pleased that our efforts in fighting corruption are yielding positive results including significant stolen assets recoveries.

8. The recovered funds are being channelled towards the development of critical infrastructure and the implementation of social inclusion programmes for our people. We are also strengthening our capacity of government entities to institutionalize reforms to ensure transparency and good governance.

9. The Anti – Corruption Summit held in London in May this year served as further reassurance of the global community’s commitment to fight corruption through the proposed practical steps to address the challenges including actions to hold perpetrators to justice within the law. Nigeria supports the development of an international legal framework to enforce anti-corruption measures and strengthen existing international institutions to effectively deal with corrupt practices.

10. Nigeria calls on Member States that are yet to sign up to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) to do so. Nigeria will continue to advocate for the facilitation of the recovery of illicit financial assets. Indeed, the speedy and unconditional return of stolen public assets should be the focus of the follow-up anti-corruption conference to be hosted by the US and UK in Washington next year.

11. Furthermore, Nigeria remains committed to the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), a global coalition which promotes transparency and accountability in the management of revenues from the oil, gas and solid minerals sectors. We voluntarily signed up to EITI because we are convinced that transparent governance is an imperative for resource-rich developing countries like ours.

12. Through the work that our national chapter of EITI has done over the years, it is clear that our faith is not misplaced. The National EITI has been empowering citizens with critical information they can use to hold government and other players in the extractive industries to account, and make recommendations that drive reforms in these strategic sectors of our national life.

Mr. President,
13. The world took a giant step in Paris, towards addressing the challenges of Climate Change. Nigeria is proud to have been part of the process leading to the adoption of the Paris Agreement in December 2015 at the 21st meeting of the Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

14. COP- 21 marked a watershed in the global community’s commitment to address climate change and we will continue in our determined efforts to reduce Green House Gas (GHG) emissions.

15. At the centre of Nigeria’s climate action is our determination to implement the strategies in our Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs), which will foster low carbon economy and sustainable growth in building a climate resilient society. We are creating public awareness through the integrated involvement of the private sector and civil society, and strengthening national institutions and mechanisms.

16. The negative consequences of Climate Change have manifested in the drying up of our Lake Chad. The means of livelihood of an estimated 30 million inhabitants of the Lake Chad Basin, spread across Cameroun, Chad, Niger and Nigeria, are being severely threatened. The cost of replenishing the lake has been put at 14 billion US Dollars under a five year plan which should be accorded global attention. Nigeria also supports the African Union initiative on the Great Green Wall to halt desertification.

17. In furtherance of our commitment to environmental sustainability, Nigeria has launched the cleanup of Ogoni land in Nigeria’s Niger Delta, based on the 2011 Environmental Assessment of the area by the United Nations Environment Programme. Multi-national oil companies operating in the area will be required to live up to their corporate social responsibilities and contribute to the cleaning-up of the environment degraded as a result of their activities and operations.
18. We call on development partners and multinationals to support our efforts, through the Ogoniland Restoration Fund.

Mr. President,
19. The 21st century has been marked by the rising insecurity unleashed by global terrorism and violent extremism. Indeed, which constitute a real threat to the international community. With the global increase in the spate of terrorist attacks, there is now, more than ever before, international consensus and greater willingness to collaborate in combating this threat.
20. Indeed, we are meeting at the time when our hosts, the American people have just marked the 15th Anniversary of the tragic and dastardly terrorist attacks on their soil. We in Nigeria, having been victims of terrorism of ourselves fully understand the impact of 9/11 on the American psyche and the families of the thousands of innocent victims whose lives were lost that day, I therefore, reiterate the Nigerian Government’s and people’s sympathies to the American people and prayers for the families of the victims that they may heal and find closure soon.

21. We hope that justice will be done to the families of victims of 9/11 as indeed to that victims of terror everywhere in conformity with the norms of international justice. As we seek justice for terror victims, the international community should avoid reacting in the heat of deep emotions of the moment by taking unilateral measures, legal or otherwise that will have a negative and disruptive impact on the international community’s collective efforts to fight terrorism.
22. We should not be distracted in our collective resolve to beat back terrorism in all its forms. As we confront terror we must also commit to stopping the proliferation of small arms and light weapons which nurture its spread. To this end, Nigeria urges member States that are yet to sign and ratify the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) to do so without further delay.

24. Nigeria has made remarkable progress in our resolve to defeat Boko Haram whose capacity to launch orchestrated attacks as a formed group has been severely degraded. In the last few months, their operations have been limited to sporadic use of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) against soft targets.

25. Nigeria has continued to combat terrorism based on the established rules of engagement and in conformity with international best practices. I take this opportunity to reaffirm Nigeria’s commitment to human rights norms and International Humanitarian Law in our efforts to counter terrorism and violent extremism. I also wish to restate the assurance that the Federal Government of Nigeria is employing all our judicial tools to investigate and treat reported cases of human rights violations.

26. I commend the contribution of our neighbours – Benin Republic, Cameroun, Chad, and Niger whose combined efforts under the Multi-National Joint Task Force (MNJTF) accomplished the present return of normalcy in areas hitherto occupied by Boko Haram.

27. May I also thank our international partners, including France, the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, the United Nations, ECOWAS the African Union and many other multilateral and bilateral partners for their invaluable support. Our experience today is evidence that with determined international collaboration, terrorism can be defeated.

Mr. President,
28. The flow of refugees and migrants world wide has attained alarming proportions. In this wise Nigeria supports the Ceasefire Agreement brokered by the United States and Russia to end the atrocious tragedy of the Syrian civil war. Of particular concern to us in Nigeria is the plight of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) arising from Boko Haram terrorism. We have taken concrete steps to address their humanitarian needs and to ensure that necessary conditions are established to enable the voluntary return of the displaced persons to their places of abode in safety and dignity.

Mr. President,
29. At the same time, the Palestinian issue, despite years and years of international efforts is no nearer to being resolved. Nigeria in company with member States of the African Union, firmly support the Two-State solution with Palestinian rights to statehood in conformity, with numerous Security Council Resolutions beginning with Resolution 242 of 1967.

30. Let me seize this opportunity to once again thank all UN and other aid agencies and development partners currently deployed in North East Nigeria. I reaffirm Nigeria’s commitment to collective action towards an effective global response to address the root causes of refugee flows worldwide.

Mr. President,
31. We acknowledge the importance of youth in national development and remain committed to harnessing the potential of the increasing youth bulge. We must take advantage of the numbers and creative energy of young people who are in the majority in Nigeria and in most other member states. Therefore, at the international level, we call for the establishment of a specialized UN agency for youth development to achieve this strategic objective.

32. Nuclear security remains central to our quest for durable peace and security. This was why I participated in the 5th Nuclear Security Summit hosted by President Barak Obama in Washington in March, 2016. Nigeria and the other peace-loving member States of the United Nations must continue to uphold the fundamental principles of nuclear disarmament non-proliferation and its peaceful uses.

Mr. President,
33. The United Nations should now redouble the long protected effort for its reform to enable it to effectively address the challenges of our times. Nigeria, therefore, reiterates its call for the reform of the United Nations Security Council, in particular to reflect equitable and fair representation and greater transparency, legitimacy and inclusiveness in its decision making.

34. Africa should be adequately represented on the United Nations Security Council in the permanent member category. In this regard, Nigeria stands ready to serve Africa and the world on a reformed security council to advance international peace and security.

Mr. President,
35. Let me conclude by reaffirming Nigeria’s abiding faith in the United Nations and in her capacity to support Member States to deliver on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

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Borno Attorney General Reveals 40 Ways Sheriff Aided And Abetted Boko Haram

Throughout last week, former Governor of Borno State, Ali Modu Sheriff issued series of statements with some of them containing threats. His reaction was based on my remarks at the NBA conference in Port Harcourt, Rivers State. I was a discussant over a paper delivered by Professor Mohammed Tabiu of Bayero University, Kano, titled, “Strengthening The Justice Sector: Implications And Challenges of National Security And Economic Growth”. During his delivery, Professor Rabiu pointed out some of the causes of the Boko Haram in Borno and other parts of the Northeast. It was during my contributions as a discussant that I spoke about some of the main causes of the Boko Haram violence with particular reference to how the violence was caused by the impunity of Ali Modu Sheriff while he was Governor of Borno State from 2003 to 2011.

 

Of all the things Sheriff said last week, the only aspect that captured my attention was his demand for me to publish facts in support of what I said in Port Harcourt.

It is based on Sheriff’s request that I present 40 chronicles of how former Governor Ali Modu Sheriff aided and abetted Boko Haram violence in Borno State which unfortunately, were ether unknown to many or were simply ignored or suppressed:

In 2008, the Borno state government under Governor Ali Modu Sheriff established a special joint police and military anti-robbery squad, called Operation Flush and commander of the operation was reporting directly to Governor Sheriff as against the usual military practice of the commander reporting to the then Commander of the 21 Armoured Brigade in Maiduguri. The operation flush which had assisted in checking the rising cases of armed robbery. However, the Operation got involved in arbitrary arrests of all manner in people including purely civil matters that were not within their terms of reference.

In 2009, the Federal Road Safety Commission introduced a policy on compulsory use of crash helmets by commercial and private motorcycle riders.

On Thursday, June 11, 2009, a detachment of Operation Flush near the Customs market in Maiduguri intercepted a group of members of the Boko Haram sect then known ‘Yan Yusufiyya’ who were on a funeral procession and asked them why they rode on motorcycles without wearing crash helmet.

The sect members saw the challenge as disregard for their mournful situation and began hot argument with the operation flush members.

An armed member of the Operation Flush eventually opened fire on 17 members of the Boko Haram sect with some of them sustaining fatal shots and admitted at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital.

The Borno Government under Ali Modu Sheriff completely disregarded that incident. The Government did not issue statement to condemn the shooting; the sympathise with the victims; the Government did not conduct any inquiry on the shooting; the Government neither visited the shot sect members in the hospital nor did it care to pay for the medication of the 17 injured sect members.

Sheriff was told by different public commentators including some officials in his administration that his act of disregard for that bloody incident could be viewed by the sect as an affront yet out of arrogance, Sheriff ignored all wise counsel with his Government acting as if there was no incident at all.

On June 12, 2009, the alleged shooter of the sect members in the operation flush team was said to have been sighted at the same duty post where he opened fire the previous day in what many saw as impunity.

In an interview on Daily Trust a few days later, leader of the sect, Malam Muhammad Yusuf threatened a reprisal attack alleging that the actions of the Borno State Government which neither condemned the shooting, made inquiry nor empathized with the sect was an indication that the shooting was orchestrated with the aim of eliminating his followers .

A day or so after the interview, Yusuf delivered a sermon in Hausa language, titled, “open letter to President Umaru Musa Yar’adua” and directed his followers to go and arm themselves in preparation of self-defense and eventful Jihad in response to the shooting of his 17 followers.

Even while Muhammad Yusuf issued this directive and threat for Jihad, Governor Ali Modu Sheriff still disregarded the possible room to make peace with the sect.

On Tuesday, July 21, 2009, some members of the sect, 9 in number were arrested in possession of 74 empty bomb shells, a large quantity of gun powders, chemicals and other components of making improvised explosive devices. They were arrested in Biu, headquarters of Biu local government area in southern part of Borno State, which is about 180 kilometers away from Maiduguri.

On Friday, July 24, 2009, the 9 arrested sect members were paraded at the police headquarters in Maiduguri with their materials for making Improvised explosive devices on display by the police.

Commander of the group of 9 sect members, Inusa Ibrahim Sabo told journalists on record that they were in possession of the explosive materials in preparation to defend themselves against Ali Modu Sheriff’s operation flush. He said they were directd by Muhammad Yusuf to arm themselves because they presumed the shooting of their brothers was intentional and they were no longer safe.

That very Friday of July 24, 2009, the first explosion in Maiduguri took place. It was a locally made bomb which exploded at night in the residence of one Hassan Sani Badami from Biu, a follower of the sect trained in making explosive devices. The bomb exploded whileit as being prepared by Badami. Another follower of the sect working with Badami sustained severe injuries while Badami’s wife and child were taking to the headquarters of Operation Flush on Dikwa road.

The following day, Muhammad Yusuf in reaction, described Badami’s death as ticket for him into paradise.

On Sunday, July 26, 2009, Daily Trust published an interview granted by Muhammad Yusuf in which Yusuf reviewed the whole situation including what happened and threatened that there was going to be revenge but refused to disclose details of the operation.

Unknown to residents, Yusuf and his fighters had planned their attack for the night of that same Sunday, July 26, 2009. All GSM lines were disabled by the sect as no network had service throughout the night. The aim was to make the simultaneous strike successful. At about 10 pm or so, members of the sect grouped in batches and, simultaneously, struck different police stations and residences of police officers and killed policemen. They were repelled at the police headquarters in Maiduguri after three hours of fire exchange which was said to have begun at 12:30 am.

A counter- insurgency operation was launched by the federal government and soldiers were deployed to Maiduguri, targeting Yusuf’s enclave which is the sect’s headquarters. After about four days of fight, the sect was subdued.

After the sect was dislodged, Sheriff invited traditional ward heads and ordered them to point at houses belonging to fleeing sect members with most of the houses brought down.

In June, 2010, Malam Abubakar Shekau appeared in a circulated video, (the first from the sect), declaring himself the new leader of the sect and threatening to turn Borno and Nigeria into “Somalia” in revenge of what he called “injustice against the sect” and saying he will violently institute Sharia legal system in Nigeria.

From 2010, the sect members, riding on motorcycles began to assassinate policemen at check points and duty posts. Then, they started killing soldiers, Government workers, politicians and later theybegan to attack communities.

All as they say, is now a history of violence resulting from the impunity of Ali Modu Sheriff.

It is important to say here, that Ali Modu Sheriff might in his usual convenience, want to create a diversion by likely going to say that Boko Haram attacks preceded his administration but this is not true and here are the facts.

Prior to the 2003 Governorship elections, Ali Modu Sheriff as the candidate of the then ANPP was in a comparatively weak position because he was contesting against a sitting Governor Mala Kachalla who was seeking reelection under the Alliance for Democracy.

It was public knowledge that following the introduction of Sharia legal system by Zamfara State, there was general agitation by Muslims across the Northern States that Sharia legal be introduced in their respective States.

Ahead of the 2003 elections, agitation for Sharia continued to the extent that some Governorship candidates openly promised to introduce Sharia if elected while some Governors in power introduced Sharia to avoide loosing reelection.

In Borno State, then Governor Mala Kachalla didn’t introduce Sharia but he had set up a council of religious leaders for advice.

Muhammad Yusuf who wasn’t violent then was known to be a major proponent of Sharia.

It wasn’t clear whether Ali Modu Sheriff as Governorship candidate desperate to defeat a sitting Governor might have approached Muhammad Yusuf for support of his followers in exchange for introduction of Sharia law after winning the Governorship.

Shortly after winning the 2003 elections, Ali Modu Sheriff created the Ministry of Religious Affairs under a pioneer Commissioner, Buji Foi who was later found to be one of the financiers of the sect under Yusuf. However, Sheriff didn’t introduce Sharia.

In an exclusive interview titled “Betrayal drove Boko Haram to arms –Aisha Wakili” published by The Sun Newspapers on 22nd August 2016, Barrister Aisha Wakil, known to have had a close relationship with the late Muhammad Yusuf was quoted to have said, that before the 2009 crisis that led to the current violence of the Boko Haram, the late Yusuf had told her that he was betrayed by Borno State Government led by Ali Modu Sheriff. “He (Yusuf) said they would fight the government. I said it was not going to happen. I asked him if I could come in and he agreed. He said the government had betrayed the group, but he refused to tell me what the betrayal was all about. He said that they would call me and some elders and I would know how they were betrayed” said Aisha Wakil in that recent interview.

Whereas Sheriff has always claimed that the violence of Boko Haram preceded his administration, what is a fact is that in October, 2003, part of the Boko Haram members, then known as Taliban, broke away from Muhammad Yusuf claiming that they could no longer live in a place that wasn’t being governed by Sharia law and this was some months after Sheriff took oath of office on May 29, 2003.

The breakaway faction called themselves ‘Taliban’ led by someone nicknamed Mullah Umar. They set up a base outside Kanamma, a village in Yobe state, located on the border between Nigeria and Niger Republic. They nicknamed their new base ‘Afghanistan’. They declared the new base a sovereign State under Sharia law.

In January 2004, the sect members had problems with the police in Kannama (the new sovereign State under the breakaway). The sect members launched their first ever attack on the police in Kananma and another in Damaturu, carting away police arms and ammunitions.

The federal government under President Olusegun Obasanjo responded by sending military troops to confront them. After two days of fierce battle, dozens of them were said to have been killed and 50 were arrested, while the rest fled and went underground. Some soldiers might have been killed also, but the military did not disclose the number of casualties.

In September, 2004 another group of the sect, attacked the divisional police headquarters in Bama local government area of Borno state, killed some policemen including an assistant commissioner, and destroyed the station. The group also laid similar ambush on the divisional police headquarters in Gwoza local government, destroyed some properties and, carted away arms. The sect members moved to the Mandara hills in Gwoza local government. The federal government responded by deploying soldiers.

After two days of battle on the hills, 28 members of the group were killed while others fled. Later, security men in Cameroon arrested five members of the sect and handed over to the Nigerian government.

For 3 years, the sect went underground until, in May 2007, they re-appeared in Kano state shortly after the April elections, and attacked the Sharada office of the Federal Roads Safety Commission (FRSC), killing two officers on night duty. Within the same week, they were said to have attacked Panshekara police station, killing 11 policemen, including a DPO, and carted away arms.

In 2009, they reappeared in Maiduguri where they first left in 2003.

In an interview on Sunday Politics on Channels TV, Ali Modu Sheriff said about two weeks ago, that he had seen Muhammad Yusuf at the Giwa military Barracks in Maiduguri after he was arrested during 2009 crisis. The important question is why was Yusuf moved from the military custody to the police headquarters if not for him to be killed especially given the fact that Buji Foi was taken to the same police headquarters and killed? What did Sheriff as Chief security officer do to secure Muhammad Yusuf? Why was Muhammad Yusuf not allowed to make open confessions which could have included his claim of being betrayed?

On 5th of July, 2011, former Governor Ali Modu Sheriff tendered an apology to the Boko Haram sect “for whatever he might have done wrong to them”. Why did he apologize if he knew he did nothing wrong to the sect?

From the 40 chronicles here presented, what I find undoubted is that former Governor Ali Modu Sheriff’s likely desperation for power in 2003 and his arrogance is what led us to the violence of the Boko Haram insurgents that has led to the deaths of over 20,000 persons, displacement of over 2.5 million citizens and destruction of property worth 3 trillion naira.

 

Barrister Kaka Shehu Lawan

Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Borno State.

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Staff Screening: Our Committee Will Be Fair To All – Kogi Auditor General

The location and work schedule of the Kogi State Staff Screening Review and Complaints Committee will be announced next Wednesday. The Chairman of the committee and State Auditor General, Alhaji Yakubu Yusuf Okala, said this while speaking to the media on Thursday 28th July, 2016, after the inaugural meeting of the committee at the Government House, Lokoja.

Alhaji Okala said all Kogi state civil servants and pensioners, who felt aggrieved with the outcome of the staff screening exercise but have relevant documents to support thier claims should make themselves available to the committee. He said all cases will be treated carefully and fairly.

He reiterated that the administration of Governor Yahaya Bello is determined to keep every genuine worker in its employment and was only interested in removing ghost workers or those who are working illegally in the state civil service.

Following the presentation of the report by the Staff Screening & Validation Committee last Monday, Governor Bello set up a 23-man Complaints Review Committee immediately and charged them to work speedily and justly to ensure that all issues arriving from the Screening Exercise are quickly resolved. In the report, a total of 18,211 Ghost Workers or Unintended Beneficiaries were discovered to be drawing salaries from the State and Local Government. This meant that approximately N213b had been lost to these people over the last 13 years.

Asked what the terms of reference were for his committee, Alhaji Okala said, “One: Further screening of the ‘Cleared List.’ Two: Scrutinise further those currently on ‘Problem List.’ Three: Attend to complaints with the view to resolving them.

“After our meeting next Wednesday, we will announce the venue for the exercise along with the work schedule and modalities so that each ministry, agency, department and local government area will know when to come and present their case. We promise that the process will be as painless and organised as possible. Everyone will be given the chance to prove their case before the committee.”

The committee is made up of seasoned professionals, career civil servants, and law enforcement officers. Barrister I.O. Alhassan, representing the Attorney General, is the Committee Secretary, while the Local Government Areas Auditor General, Alhaji Ahmed Ododo, is a member. Other members include Former Auditor General, Hajia Maryam Ladi Ibrahim; State Legal Adviser, Barrister Femi Adegboyega and the Representative of the Ministry of Local Governments and Chieftaincy Affairs, Mr. Alfa Arome.

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Kogi State Government lost 213 Billion Naira to Ghost Workers in 16 years – Auditor General 

The Kogi State Auditor General, Alhaji Yusufu Okala, has said that the state lost a colossal amount of money, approximately N213,034,857,280.44, to a category of entities he called “Ghost Workers/Unintended Beneficiaries.”

The Auditor stated this when the Staff Screening & Validation Committee, jointly led by himself and the Auditor General of the Local Governments Areas, Mallam Usman Ahmed Ododo, submitted their report to the State Governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, at a Stakeholders Forum held in Government House, Lokoja, today, July 25th 2016. This committee was set up by the Governor with the mandate to review and authenticate the report earlier submitted by the Staff Screening and Verification Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr. Jerry Agbaji.

According to Alhaji Okala, “As at the time of inaugurating the Staff Screening and Verification Committee on February 22, 2016, the total staff on the nominal payroll of the State (State MDAs and Local Governments) was 88, 973 with monthly wage bill of N 5,809,578,703.72. However, after the conclusion of this exercise on July 24, 2016, the cleared and validated workforce is 63, 870.”

Gov. Bello lamented the colossal loss recorded by the state through the syndrome, said his administration has put a permanent stop to financial theft in the state. The Governor said the screening exercise is the first layer of civil service reform, which his administration is embarking on, adding that he is determined to re-position the State Civil Service to play a vital role of facilitating economic drive growth in the state.

The State Auditor General, who presented the report before the large turn out at the forum, said, his committee, which had the State Commissioner for Finance, Alhaji Idris Ashiru Asiwaju and the State Accountant General Alhaji Jibrin Momoh, made certain recommendations to the Governor. These recommedations include the Computerising the Payroll System of the State, Local Government workforce& Pensioners, Centralising Payroll Processing, Biometric for All State& Local Governments Staff, and Introduction of PreDisbursement Audit for Salary Payment among other recommendations.

Meanwhile, Governor has set up a review Committee to entertain complains that may arise from the screening exercise. The 11-man committee ?is expected to submit its report within 21 days.

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Turkey Charges Coup General With Treason …They Will Pay The Heavy Price – Erdogan

Istanbul’s most senior soldier has been charged with treason as eight leading members of the plot to overthrow the government fled to Greece.

General Erdal Ozturk who commanded the Third Army Corps has been detained and is facing treason charges for his role in the aborted coup.

His men attempted to seize strategic locations across Istanbul when they were confronted by thousands of unarmed civilians who came out in support of President Recep Erdogan.

Erdogan has suggested the ringleaders could face the death penalty even though Turkey abolished capital punishment as part of its attempts to join the European Union.

Turkish officials have said 161 civilians have killed and 1,440 wounded.

Almost 2,900 troops have been arrested, including at least two generals.

Eight soldiers landed in Alexandroupolis today and tried to claim asylum in the EU state, after a coup in neigbouring Turkey that left more than 250 people dead.

Turkish foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu immediately demanded that the captain, two majors and five privates were returned ‘immediately’ to Turkey where they would face punishment.

Two majors, a captain and five privates have landed in the EU nation in a military helicopter today, according to Turkish Dogan news agency

Greece claimed it would have to consider international laws before returning them, although it promised to send the helicopter back.

However, Mevlut Cavusoglu has said that Greece has now promised to return the ‘treacherous soldiers’ to be punished in Turkey.

The news comes after Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildrim said the nation would consider bringing back the death penalty to deal with them, after it was abolished in 2004.

The blackhawk helicopter landed in Greece today after a night of violence in Istanbul, where more than 1,500 people were injured.

Some 104 plotters were killed, while more than 200 people – at least 41 of them police officers and 47 civilians – fell as ‘martyrs’.

Footage shows Greek officials leading the men out in handcuffs after they were arrested for illegal entry into Greece.

A spokeswoman for Greece, Olga Gerovasili, today said that they are in contact with Turkish authorities and will arrange ‘the return of the military helicopter as soon as possible’.

As for the eight military passengers, she said: ‘We will follow the procedures of international law.

‘However, we give very serious considerations to the fact that (the Turkish military men) are accused, in their country, of violating the constitutional order and trying to overthrow democracy.’

Greek police say that the eight arrested Turks include two majors, four captains and two sergeants first class.

This differs from Turkish sources that said they were two majors, a captain sand five privates.

Last night, the army had told people to stay indoors so that they could depose President Erdogan, but they were met by civilians who confronted them, defending the government.

Ordinary Turks confronted rifle-wielding soldiers, climbed atop tanks and laid in front of military vehicles in an effort to take back control of the country.

President Erdogan called on people to take to the streets, leading to reports of groups of soldiers surrendering at several key locations in Ankara and Istanbul, including Bosphorus Bridge.

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Saraki Reportedly Begs Attorney General To Drop Forgery Charges Against Him And Ekweremadu

Senate President Bukola Saraki has reportedly pleaded with the Attorney General of the Feeration, Abubakar Malami to drop the forgery charges against him and his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu, SaharaReportedly has said.
Following the refusal of the AGF to appear before the Senate as summoned by the upper legislative chamber, Saraki and Malami were said to have gone into a closed door meeting on Tuesday.
Malami had reportedly gone to the premises of the Senate in the company of Senator Ita Enang, President Muhammadu Buhari’s special assistant on the National Assembly, arrived to see Senator David Umaru, head of the Senate committee on the judiciary. Mr. Malami had gone to assure Senator Umaru of his willingness to honor an invitation by the senatorial committee.
Upon hearing of the presence of Malami, Mr. Saraki requested to see the AGF after his meeting with Senator Umaru.

Saraki Reporters said sources confirmed that the attorney general acceded to the meeting with Senator Saraki, choosing to see Mr. Saraki in the presence of Ita Enang.

However, just before the meeting started, Senator Saraki and Mr. Malami agreed that it should be private.

“Our sources disclosed that the embattled senator, who is facing two trials, one for alleged falsification in his asset declarations, the other for alleged forgery of Senate rules, turned the short meeting into a begging session. ”

“One source who was briefed on what transpired told our correspondent that Mr. Saraki pleaded with the attorney general not be part of those persecuting him, swearing that he knew nothing about the alleged forgery of Senate rules under which he was elected as Senate President.”

“One of our sources claimed that Mr. Malami spoke sympathetically, but declined to make a commitment to stop the prosecution of Senators Saraki and Ekweremadu.”

“Following the AGF’s non-committal stance, a senator told SaharaReporters that Mr. Malami was likely to face hostile questioning when he is answers the summons of the Senate Judiciary committee. Mr. Malami is expected to appear before the committee tomorrow at 11 a.m. (Nigerian time).”

“Our Senate source disclosed that the members of the committee were divided over the summons to Mr. Malami. “Some members feel that the invitation to Malami to appear is solely intended to bully him so as to force him to withdraw charges against Dr. Saraki and Senator Ekweremadu,” the source said.”

“One committee member argued that the summons itself violates the constitution and Senate rules which forbid senatorial intervention in matters that are before the courts. He cited Section 174 of the 1999 Nigerian constitution, which empowers the AGF to initiate legal proceedings against anybody according to the discretion vested in his office. The senator also remarked that Section 150 of the constitution shows that the office of the Attorney General of the Federation is one of the few offices created by the constitution. ?”

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The Feast On General Tukur Buratai By Sharon Faliya Cham

Oops! Woops! I haven’t missed the sardonic relish on the faces and voices of Failing Wailers aka Wailing Wailers as they feasted on the non-story of the so called story of the ownership of two houses in Dubai by our Chief of Army Staff, General Tukur Buratai. From some followers of the man in Zaria city who felt General Buratai should have allowed them to punch the chests and faces of military officers without repercussion to the bulk of the followers of the man who famously said stealing is not corruption, the feast over the General’s ownership of those two houses in Dubai was huge, and till now, wherever and whenever you see them, the glint of mirth on their foreheads over the deliciousness of this “tasty meal” is as bright as the brightness of a policeman’s torch!
But wait a minute! While it is understandable to pardon the followers of the Zaria man for being so naive to expect the country’s army to allow them ride roughshod over their troops, which even Iran itself can never ever allow, it is utterly unpardonable for Failing Wailers to mock or deride or accuse General Buratai of any wrongdoing over his ownership of two landed properties in Dubai! Why so? All the news stories about the General’s Dubai properties have stated that the man has duly declared them in his assets declaration forms at the Code of Conduct Bureau, and that they are available for the scrutiny of the media and the public, which then clearly gives him a clear moral edge over ALL his accusers. First impression is, if those two properties were proceeds of some shady deals then the General wouldn’t have had the audacity to include them in his assets declaration forms; he would have considered the option of that famous Senator who is battling so many cases of fraud even up to Panama!
It is on record that immediately General Buratai was made the Chief of Army Staff, he immediately directed all army officers to declare their assets with the Code of Conduct Bureau, and this is a novelty in Nigeria if my recollection of history is correct. So, why should the followers of the man who ruled this country for six solid years without honoring the demands of the public for him to declare his assets now turn round to mock an Army General who “gave a damn” about declaration of assets?
To all the morally bankrupt people who felt no qualms in supporting a President who also felt no qualms in promoting all forms of moral bankruptcy and then looted our country blind, and who also was shameless and qualms-less enough to declare on national television that he didn’t give a damn about listening to the calls of his citizens to publicly declare his assets, you have no scintilla of right to attack or mock General Buratai; not until you prevail on your gutless hero to get the guts to declare his assets to Nigerians. That will be the time you can demand accountability from anyone, for you all are on record to have consistently warred against the war on corruption, and if your attacks on General Buratai is born out of a sudden love and admiration for the war against graft, then do yourselves the favor of publicly denouncing the corrupt practices promoted by your mischievous hero and thereafter sign a petition calling for  his arrest and prosecution!
In the meantime, President Buhari and Nigeria cannot afford to sacrifice a disciplined and competent military general like General Tukur Buratai on the altar of needless wailings from hypocrites. The President cannot afford to let those who have never ever believed in him, and who are also not patriotic, to determine or influence his choices and decisions. On this matter, the only people competent to “wail” over any perceived infraction by General Buratai are those who have consistently supported and promoted the ideals of CHANGE. They have the moral right to do so.
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General Buratai Bought Second Dubai Property Days After Appointment As Army Chief – SaharaReporters

As this news website exclusively revealed last week, General Buratai and his two wives in 2013 paid the sum of 1,498,534.00 AED (N120 million/$419,000) for the first property, Project TFG Marina Hotel Unit 2711. Sale documents indicated that the first property was handed over to the Buratais on January 13, 2013.

On July 13, 2015, President Muhammadu Buhari appointed General Buratai as Chief of Army Staff. Our investigations show that, within 11 days of his appointment, the general was making arrangements for the purchase of a second property from the same company in Dubai. Our investigators obtained evidence that, between July 24 and August 17, 2015, General Buratai paid a total sum of N42.2 million into TFG Sigma 111’s account in Nigeria (Skye Bank 1770380452).

Evidence exclusively obtained by SaharaReporters reveal that General Buratai made N10 million payments on July 24 and August 7 respectively. Three days later, another N10 million was paid into the real estate firm’s account, The phone number on the Skye Bank teller is 08033349740 Saharareporters investigations shows that it belonged to a Nigerian Army Major Emmanuel G. Adegbola of the Nigerian Army Finance Corps (N/10808). On August 17, 2015, the Chief of Army Staff paid the sum of N3,270,000 into the account.

Our sources within the Army disclosed that the lodgments came from Army funds stolen and diverted by General Buratai. They explained that the diverted monies were taken from funds budgeted for the feeding, medical care and payment of allowances of soldiers fighting the war against Islamist insurgents in Nigeria’s northeast zone.

Our sources also stated that the funds for General Buratai’s first Dubai property came from a contract awarded for the supply of vehicles and motorcycles to the Army. They asserted that General Buratai had cornered the contract in his days as Director of Procurement at the Army Headquarters, using a front identified as Usman Gamawa. “The contract was awarded for the purchase of new vehicles, but Alhaji Gamawa’s Baggash Investment Limited bought second-hand vehicles and motorcycles from Niger Republic for the use of soldiers,” said one source. He said the purchase of substandard vehicles exposed troops engaged counter-insurgency operations to heightened danger, made them vulnerable to attacks by Boko Haram insurgents, and reduced their effectiveness.

Army sources disclosed that, on arrival in Nigeria, the vehicles and motorcycles supplied by General Buratai’s front, Mr. Gamawa, were taken for refurbishment at Mogadishu Cantonment under the supervision of one Sergeant Dandan Garba.

Angered by the deplorable state of the vehicles and motorcycles, a group known as Concerned Soldiers and Officers From The Northeast petitioned President Muhammadu Buhari to demand an investigation into the financial malfeasance perpetrated by General Buratai. A member of the group told SaharaReporters that they want President Buhari to ask General Buratai to explain where he got money for his various assets, including the real estate in Dubai. He said the COAS also owns a huge industrial-scale farm, Tukur and Tukur Farm Limited, on the Abuja-Keffi Expressway. “The farm is currently a huge construction site, featuring a tarred road, a zoo, a guesthouse, chalets, a restaurant, a cinema hall, a mini-stadium and other leisure facilities,” said the source, adding that some of the equipment on the site belongs to the Army.

In a statement issued last Friday, Colonel Sani Kukasheka Usman, acting Director of Army Public Relations, claimed that General Buratai and his family own two properties in Dubai that were paid for in installments through personal savings. But Colonel Usman’s claim that the two homes were bought three years ago is at odds with purchase documents seen by SaharaReporters. Colonel Usman also stated that General Buratai was a victim of a campaign of calumny.

Purchase documents for General Buratai’s first property in Dubai showed that the COAS and his wives paid for Project Marina Hotel Unit 2711 in one lump, instead of by installments. Their single payment earned them what the sellers, Sigma 111, called “incentives, promotions and early payment bonus.” Owing to the lump payment, the sellers shaved off AED 43,466 from the AED 1,542,000 that was the asking price for the property. General Buratai paid AED 1,498,534 for the first property.

The cash lodgments into Sigma 111 Skye Bank account also suggested that General Buratai did not buy the second property three years ago, as Colonel Usman claimed. The dates of the payment showed that money started gushing into the account eleven days after Buratai’s appointment as Chief of Army Staff.

Colonel Usman also claimed that General Buratai had always declared the two properties as parts of his assets. But such claims are hardly cast-iron proof of fidelity to the laws on declaration of assets. Public officials regularly claim to own assets they have not bought. Similarly, Colonel Usman claimed that General Buratai was never a Director of Procurement at the Defense Headquarters. Yet, evidence from the website of Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP) proves the military spokesman wrong. According to the site bpp.gov.ng, General Buratai attended the 2014 Defense Headquarters Procurement Seminar as the Director of Procurement.

The website quoted General Buratai as stating at the seminar, “It is our hope that at the end of the seminar, we would all be better informed about public procurement procedures and work towards the emergence of an enhanced Defense Procurement Procedure for the Armed Forces of Nigeria.”

Several retired and serving Army officers told SaharaReporters that General Buratai seemed to be getting away with his financial misdeeds because of a growing culture of corruption in the armed forces. They point to the case of Major-General A.B. Abubakar, the current Chief of Administration at the Army Headquarters. According to two sources, General Abubakar was never sanctioned after he reportedly misappropriated huge sums meant for the equipping and training of re-absorbed soldiers based in Kontagora, Niger State. Another military source cited Brigadier-General Momoh of the Department of Logistics, Army Headquarters who reportedly diverted millions of the Army’s funds to his private account. “His only punishment was redeployment to the Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) of the Nigerian Army,” said the source.

Yet another military source drew attention to the case of one Colonel Jega, who reportedly placed 101st at the Defense College exams. Yet, the colonel got preferential treatment and was sent to the Defense College in Bangladesh, ahead of those who performed much better than he. “Some of those who did better in the exams were even retired,” our source said.

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Kogi: Auditor General Slants LG Staff for Salary Delays

The Auditor General for Local Governments in Kogi State, Alhaji Ahmed Usman Ododo, has placed the blame for the delay in payment of salaries at the local government areas in the state on the questionable activities of certain staff.

The auditor said the refusal of the local government staff to furnish his office with certain documents is the key reason for the delay in effecting the three months back pay for the civil servants at that level. He said this while speaking about the issues militating against the state’s civil service restructuring this evening in Lokoja.

“We, the citizens, are the real problem of this state, not the leaders,” Mr. Ododo said. “It took them a long time to release to us the information we requested for in the approved format. As we speak, some are yet to send us what we need to prepare their salaries.

“Two weeks ago, we asked all the staff at the Local Government Education Authority to send us the list of their staff that have work schedules. Up until this moment, none have complied. So, how do we pay them?”

The Auditor added that cleared teachers at local government level have been paid, in addition to the 14 local council staff. The LGAs paid include Dekina, Okene, Yagba East, Yagba West, Ankpa, Adavi, Ofu, Omala, Lokoja, Ijumu, Mopa Amuro, Idah, Ajaokuta, and Okehi. He reinstated that 48 out of 55 Ministries, Departments and Agencies in the state have also been paid, while 4280 pensioners would be getting their money latest by Tuesday, June 28th.

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Boko Haram Splits Over Ties With Islamic State – US General

A senior United States of America military General wednesday said the Boko Haram terror group had been fractured internally.

Lieutenant General Thomas Waldhauser, the nominee to lead the US military Africa Command (AFRICOM), disclosed this in Washington during his nomination hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee.

Waldhauser said the problem in the group resulted from some members splitting from shadowy leader, Abubakar Shekau, over his failure to adhere to guidance from the Iraq and Syria-based Islamic State.

According to Reuters/NAN, Waldhauser said the internal division was illustrative of the limits of Islamic State’s influence over Boko Haram so far, in spite of the West African group’s pledge of allegiance to it last year.
“Several months ago, about half of Boko Haram broke off to a separate group because they were not happy with the amount of buy-in, if you will, from Boko Haram into the ISIL brand,” he explained.

He, however, said Shekau had not fallen into line with Islamic State’s instructions, including ignoring calls for Boko Haram to stop using children as suicide bombers.

Waldhauser said: “He’s been told by ISIL to stop doing that, but he has not done so, and that’s one of the reasons why this splinter group has broken off.

“But the Islamic State was trying to reconcile those two groups.”
The military chief said there was no evidence that Boko Haram had so far received significant operational support or financing from Islamic State.

He said the assessment suggested that Boko Haram’s loyalty pledge had so far, mostly been a branding exercise.
Waldhauser acknowledged differing opinions about how much influence Islamic State actually had over Boko Haram, which won global infamy for its 2014 kidnapping of 276 Chibok schoolgirls.

He said: “They certainly have not given them a lot of financial assistance.

“So the point could be that it is perhaps in improvement in tradecraft, in training and the like.”
Waldauser stated that Shekau’s local focus and voiced concern was about whether a splinter group may act more in concert with Islamic State’s trans-regional ambitions.

“What concerns me is the break-off group of Boko Haram, which wants to be more ISIL-like, and consequently buy into the ISIL-brand of attacking western interests,” he said.

Meanwhile, an army officer in Niger Republic said that a multinational force had begun operations against Boko Haram along the border between the country and Nigeria.

Brigadier General Abdou Sidikou-Issa, the Tactical Chief of Staff for troops based in Niger’s southern zone of Diffa, yesterday in Niamey said troops from Chad and Nigeria were involved in the operation.

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Profile Of Newly Appointed Inspector General Of Police, Ibrahim Idris

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday approved the appointment of a new Inspector General of police in the person of Ibrahim Kpotun Idris.
Idris, who until his appointment is an Assistant Inspector-General of Police, will be in acting capacity until his confrimation or otherwise.
Below is the profile of the new IG
Ibrahim Kpotun Idris an indigene of Kutigi, Lavun in Niger State, was born on 15th of January 1959, and was enlisted into the Nigerian Police Force in 1984, after graduating from the Ahmadu Bello University Zaria with a Bachelors degree in Agriculture. He also holds a degree in Law from the University of Maiduguri.
AIG Idris has served in various commands and formations in the Nigerian Police Force, working in the Police Mobile Force for 17 years as Unit Commander, Squadron Commander, and Commandant. He served as Commissioner of Police in Nasarawa and Kano States and was also the Commissioner of Police in charge of Police Mobile Force at the Force Headquarters.
He was also at the United Nations Mission in Liberia and East Timor and was awarded “Medal of Merit” by the President of the Republic of East Timor in recognition of his service.
AIG Idris, who was in charge of Operations at the Force Headquarters before his appointment as the Acting Inspector-General of Police, will act in that capacity pending his confirmation.
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Buhari Appoints Ibrahim Kpotum Idris As Nigeria’s Inspector General Of Police

President Muhammadu Buhari will announce a former Kano State Police Commissioner, Ibrahim Kpotun Idris as the new acting Inspector General of Police.

Mr. Idris is an Assistant Inspector General of Police who once led the Kano state police command.

Idris will replace Solomon Arase, who retires from the police force today.

The President is currently meeting with the new IGP for a presidential briefing.

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