Presidency: Ohanaeze Moves To Secure Arewa Forum’s Support

The pan-Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, on Monday sent an appeal to its counterpart from the north to support the South East to produce the next president in 2023 for the interest of justice and equity.

The Secretary-General of Ohanaeze and leader of the Nigerian President of Igbo Extraction in 2023, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, made the appeal when he led a delegation of Igbos on a courtesy visit to the President of Arewa Youths Consultative Forum, Alhaji Yerima Shettima in Kaduna State.

Isiguzoro reiterated that the Igbos are in total support of a united and indivisible Nigeria contrary to the calls for secession by IPOB, describing the north as a deciding factor on who becomes President of the country next year.

‘We know that the North with their population and the vast majority will always play the role of a kingmaker, being a deciding factor in 2023 presidency. We feel that the best thing to do is to migrate from the other side of the world and interphase with the real people who are holding the masses,’ he said.

Read Also: Release Kanu As New Year Gift – Ohanaeze Tells Buhari

‘What happened to the relationship between Nnamdi Azikiwe and Tafawa Balewa? What happened to the existing relationship between the North and the East? Where did we get it wrong, what transpired?

‘Is it because one person somewhere decides to paint Igbos as if we are Biafrans? No, we believe in one Nigeria. The vast majority population of Igbos are residing in 19 northern states. We have about N2.3 trillion worth of investments of Igbos in Northern Nigeria.

‘And by so doing, we said no. The best thing we have to do is to ensure that we reach out to the fulcrum of the society, the people’s general, Yerima Shettima to dialogue on the way forward with regards to 2023.’

He also said that Ohanaeze Ndigbo worldwide has mapped out resources to support any of the presidential candidates of Igbo extraction from the two major political parties, adding that Nigerians should have no doubt or fear to trust an Igbo man with power.

Responding, the president of Arewa Youths Consultative Forum, Yerima Shettima, described the visit as a welcome development, even as he condemned the violent approach which IPOB adopted to call for secession.

He, however, kicked against the zoning of the presidency to a particular region, pointing out that the contest should be thrown open for only the competent candidate to emerge.


Court Jails Four For Cyber-Fraud In Enugu

Court Jails Four For Cyber-Fraud In Enugu

The Enugu Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has secured the conviction of four internet fraudsters popularly referred to as ‘Yahoo Boys’.

They were convicted by Justice F. O. Giwa Ogunbanjo of the Federal High Court in Enugu State.

The charges of conviction bordered on forgery and impersonation to defraud.

Three of the convicts are: Orji Okpara Chimaobi, Ngene Emmanuel and Okechukwu Kelvin were sentenced to 2 years in prison with option of fine of One Million Naira each.

The last convict, Eneh Nelson Chukwudire was sentenced to one year with an option of One Million Naira fine.

Read Also: Obiano Ready To Face EFCC – Anambra Govt Reacts

The faces of the convicts were obtained by The Eastern Updates and are reproduced below;

Release Kanu As New Year Gift – Ohanaeze Tells Buhari

Release Kanu As New Year Gift – Ohanaeze Tells Buhari
President Muhammadu Buhari and Nnamdi Kanu

The youth wing of the apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to release of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu as a new year gift to Ndigbo.

Ohanaeze Youth Council Worldwide made the appeal in a statement by its President-General, Mazi Okwu Nnabuike which was made available to The Eastern Updates on Monday.

Recall that Buhari had last week ruled out the possibility of a political solution to Kanu’s freedom. This was after he had earlier told a delegation of Igbo leaders that he would look into Kanu’s case.

He is expected to appear in court this wek Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday where his lawyers would make further arguments for his bail.

Read Also: IPOB Announces No Sit-At-Home As Kanu Appears In Court

Okwu called on President Buhari to reconsider his hard stance on the IPOB leader’s incarceration.

The Ohanaeze chieftain noted that ‘as a father, the President should not be pandering to the advice of a few people which is not in the best interest of the country.

‘We are all witnesses to the unrest that has been ravaging the South-East zone since Nnamdi Kanu’s re-arrest and detention. The detention has only worsened matters and this is why we are making a passionate appeal to Mr. President to release him unconditionally.

‘Recall that the use of force never worked in the Niger-Delta region until the late President Yar’adua brought in amnesty and peace was restored. Mr. President must take a cue from that and discountenance those urging him not to free Kanu.

‘The highest new year gift he should give to Ndigbo is to accept the political solution to Kanu’s case,’ Okwu stated.

He, however, advised the leadership of the IPOB to equally toe the line of peace and avoid making further inflammatory statements.

‘They should cease from making further statements that are worsening the situation, they should give peace a chance and allow the ongoing negotiation efforts not to be in vain. This is why all forms of sit-at-home have to end,’ he advised.

He appealed to the National Assembly caucus from the South-East and other Igbo leaders to continue their efforts towards securing Kanu’s freedom.


2023: Why I Am Not Threatened By Govs Defecting To APC -Umahi

2023: Why I Am Not Threatened By Govs Defecting To APC -Umahi
Governor David Umahi

The Governor of Ebonyi State, David Umahi has asserted that the defection by some state governors to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) is not a threat to his political ambition, but he is rather happy to have them in the party.

The governor made this assertion on Monday during an interview on Channels Television breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily which was monitored by The Eastern Updates.

I feel happy rather than being threatened. My ambition is in the hand of God, power, and might belong to God.

‘The more we have governors in the APC, the more chance we have to win the election. The more chance we have to continue the project of Nigeria from where Mr President will stop by 2023,’ Umahi responded when he was asked if he is threatened by the defections.

Umahi, who is also the Chairman South-East Governors’ Forum also spoke on his recent visit to the State House in Abuja.

Read Also: Real Reason I Want To Succeed President Buhari – Umahi

He revealed that the purpose of the visit was not simply about his presidential ambition but also about the security and the socio-economic state of the southeast region.

The issue wasn’t just about going to the President to ask him that I want to contest. There were so many other issues I went to discuss with Mr President.

‘I went there to discuss solutions to our insecurity in the Southeast, and on our airport project. I went there to let him know that our airport project will be ready by May 2022 but we needed financial assistance to buy some equipment.

‘It was the last thing I mentioned to him.

‘The issue of running was by the side, and I mentioned it to him as the father of the nation and father of our political party.’

The Eastern Updates recalls that Umahi had last week, declared his 2023 presidential ambition at the State House in Abuja.

His declaration came about 24 hours after former Governor of Lagos State, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, also indicated an interest in the race. Both men are members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).


Gunmen Invade Police Station In Imo, Murder Inspector

Gunmen Invade Police Station In Imo, Murder Inspector

Unknown Gunmen on Saturday attacked a police station in Mgbidi, the headquarters of Oru West Local Government Area of Imo State.

The Police Public Relations Officer in Imo, Michael Abattam, confirmed the attack on the security facility in a statement on Saturday which was made available to The Eastern Updates.

Although he said the police personnel on duty repelled the attack by the assailants, a police inspector was killed, and another policeman was injured.

Read Also: Unknown Gunmen Throw Bombs Into Ideato South Police Post

Narrating how the incident occurred, Abattam, a Chief Superintendent of Police, explained that the station came under attack on Friday night.

Shortly after the assailants arrived at the scene in a pick-up van, they began to shoot sporadically in a bid to gain entrance into the station, causing tension in the area.

But the security operatives on duty, the command’s spokesman said, stood their ground and positioned themselves professionally to repel the gunmen.

A gunfight ensued afterward, and the assailants were said to have been overpowered, forcing them to retreat and escape in the vehicle they came with.

According to Abattam, the police operatives swiftly went after them in a ‘vigorous and aggressive’ manhunt to ensure they are arrested and brought to justice.

He appealed to residents to support the police and other security agencies with credible and timely information and to report anyone treating bullet wounds for prompt action.

Read the statement below:

Sequel to the modified and invigorated strategies emplaced by the command under the watch of the indefatigable Commissioner of Police, Imo State Command, CP Rabiu Hussaini psc, to checkmate all criminals activities within the state especially attacks police station.

On 14th January 2022 at about 2045 hours, the Command’s Tactical teams at Mgbidi Police Station repelled an attack by some hoodlums who came in a white Hilux vehicle shooting sporadically, attempted to gain entrance into the station but were repelled by the ever gallant Imo Command’s Tactical teams and the police operatives of the division who positioned themselves professionally.

They engaged the hoodlums in a gun duel.  In the process, the attackers were suppressed almost immediately, having suffered a huge defeat, with a number of them sustaining various degrees of bullet wounds, they retreated and escaped in the Toyota Hilux vehicle they came with. And were given a hot chase by the police operatives.

Consequently, a vigorous and aggressive manhunt of the hoodlums is ongoing with the sole aim of tracking and arresting the fleeing hoodlums since they cannot go far because of the huge damage done to them.

However, in the course of the attack, a police Inspector lost his life, while another sustained a minor bullet injury on his hand.

Meanwhile, the Commissioner of Police CP Rabiu Hussaini psc, commended the officers and men for their gallantry and urged them not to relent in their efforts until all criminal elements and their partners are apprehended and made to face the full wrath of the law.

He then appealed to Imolites for the continuous support and collaboration by giving security agencies especially the Police, credible and timely information and to report any person seen treating bullet wounds or hiding within the community to the nearest police station for prompt action.


Obiano Inaugurates C’ttee To Rehabilitate Mkpurummiri Addicts

Obiano Inaugurates C’ttee To Rehabilitate Mkpurummiri Addicts

The Government of Anambra State has announced that it has inaugurated a committee that will work towards rehabilitating youths in various communities in the State, who are addicts of methamphetamine, popularly known as mkpurummiri in the South east.

Commissioner for Health, Dr. Vincent Okpala made this disclosure during a meeting with traditional rulers at the Government House, Awka.

The Commissioner said: ‘The State government has inaugurated a committee that will see to the rehabilitation of those who abuse crystal Methamphetamine across the state.

‘The committee is made up of health experts, psychologists, officials of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, the police among others, and seek the cooperation of Ndigwe Anambra to enable the committee work seamlessly.’

Read Also: Anambra: Soludo, Kinsmen Visit Obiano On A Thank You Visit

The abuse of methamphetamine in the State became prevalent last year, with communities rising against its consumers.

Most communities adopted a special sanction for abusers of the drug which involved tying them to pillars at community halls, or trees in village squares, and flogging them mercilessly.

Some youths who were meted such treatment were reported to have died after they were flogged for consuming the substance.

The health commissioner, however, said that rehabilitation by the committee would be a professional thing, and would not involve merciless flogging of the abusers of the substance.

In a related development, some unidentified youths on Saturday murdered a 27-year-old man identified as Darlington Ugboaja, who was found with crystal meth or Methamphetamine, a nervous stimulant known in local parlance as ‘Mkpurummiri’.

The Eastern Updates gathered that the killing has led to tension in Anara Market in Isiala Mbano local government area of Imo State where the incident occurred.

Panic-stricken traders quickly closed their shop for fear of a reprisal from the victim’s kinsmen.


IPOB Announces No Sit-At-Home As Kanu Appears In Court

IPOB Announces No Sit-At-Home As Kanu Appears In Court

The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), has announced that there will be no sit-at-home across the Southeast on Wednesday and Thursday next week as being speculated in several quarters.

IPOB relaxed the sit-at-home due to the scheduled judgment of the High Court sitting in Abia State.

The Eastern Updates had earlier reported that court will on Wednesday rule on Kanu’s fundamental rights suit.

However, IPOB’s spokesman, Emma Powerful, however, limited the sit-at-home order to Tuesday, when Kanu will appear before Justice Binta Nyako of an Abuja Federal High Court.

Powerful explained that the decision was to allow people of the Southeast go about their lawful business as the court rules on Kanu’s fundamental right suit.

Read Also: Why We Banned Fulani Cattle In South-East — IPOB

In a statement he issued on Saturday which was obtained by The Eastern Updates, Powerful said: ‘We are the Indigenous People of Biafra IPOB under the command of our indefatigable Leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu. Following our Leader’s upcoming court proceedings on the 18th, 19th and 20th of January 2022 next week, we wish to remind Biafrans that there will be only sit at home on 18th of January, and not 19th and 20th of January. In keeping with our avowed solidarity with our Leader, the entire Biafra land will be on lock down only on January 18 for obvious reasons.

‘Biafrans should understand that 19th January is the judgment day in the suit by our Leader against the Federal Government which is pending before an Umuahia High Court. So, there will be no sit-at-home on that day.

‘Again, we don’t want to compound the pains of our people, hence, we will limit the sit-at-home to only January 18. Biafrans and residents of Biafra are free to go about their businesses without molestations on 19th and 20th January. Anybody found enforcing non-existent Monday sit-at-home on 17th, 19th and 20th is criminal and must be treated as such, IPOB leadership have given order and that order is what signed.

‘Everybody must be careful because this wave that is coming will consume many and every principal of IPOB mostly the coordinators must know that it will bounce on their heads if they don’t checkmate the activities of members and call them to order. IPOB is not village or social club where everybody will behave untoward to people like cultists.

“It is on the table and to the knowledge of IPOB leadership how some principal officers were encouraging evils in IPOB without minding the repercussions and consequences but we want to make categorically known to them that it will come back to him or her that encouraged evil against his or her fellow human beings

‘For clarity sake, we reiterate that there will be no sit-at-home on January 19th and 20th. Nobody is expected to interfere with either human or vehicular movements in those days under any guise. Any detractor or agent of darkness caught obstructing peoples activities in Biafra land on January 19th and 20th in the name of enforcing sit-at-home will regret his or her actions.’

Powerful disclosed that anybody seen enforcing sit-at-home on those days mentioned were not members of IPOB.


Ebonyi PDP Official Collapses In Court After Days In Detention

Ebonyi PDP Official Collapses In Court After Days In Detention

The Publicity Secretary of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Ebonyi state chapter, Nwoba Chika Nwoba, yesterday collapsed in Court when he was brought to court to be arraigned.

Nwoba was supposed to be arraigned on Tuesday at the Magistrate Court two, Abakaliki, but police failed after bringing him to court premises same day.

A source in the police told newsmen that police failed to provide all the needed documents for the arrangement.

But on Wednesday when police finally brought Nwoba who looked very ill after being in their custody for about four days to the court, he collapsed while working to the court room.

Read Also: You’re Condoning Gangsterism In Ebonyi, PDP Accuses Police

Nwoba was brought to the court in police Hilux van, and was dropped about half a pole to the court room, on coming down from the van, he staggered to the court room which he could not enter before he felt flat on the ground.

The arraignment of Nwoba was supposed to hold by 9am but he was brought to the court at 3:10pm.

Though he was rushed back to the police clinic for medical attention but the Commissioner of Police Ebonyi state command according to a source insisted he be arraigned alive or dead.

The Eastern Updates had earlier reported that the Security Consultant for Ebubeagu and the State Chairman, All Progressive Congress, APC, Chief Stanley Okoro Emegha had on Monday explained that the State Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Publicity Secretary, Chika Nwoba was never abducted by Ebubeagu security outfit as being speculated by some ‘misinformed’ persons in the State.

In a chat with Newsmen in Abakaliki, the APC Chieftain stressed that Chika Nwoba who had issues to answer as regards the propagation of fake news was merely arrested by Ebubeagu and handed over to the Police for further investigation.

According to him, propagation of fake news and fake news itself was more dangerous than the activities of unknown gunmen operating within the South East region.


Court Fixes Jan 19 For Judgment In Kanu’s Human Rights Case

Court Fixes Jan 19 For Judgment In Kanu’s Human Rights Case
Nnamdi Kanu

An Abia High Court sitting in Umuahia has announced January 19th, 2022, for judgment in a fundamental rights suit between the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu’s and the Federal Government which is pending before it.

 The suit, which was before Justice Benson Anya of the High Court of Abia State in Umuahia, was heard and concluded on merit on December 10, 2021.

 According to Aloy Ejimakor, special counsel to Kanu and the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), who initiated the suit on August 27, 2021, the suit, among others, is seeking a declaration: ‘That the military invasion of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s home in Abia State in September 2017 by the Nigerian government is illegal, unlawful, unconstitutional and amounts to infringement of his fundamental rights to life, dignity of his person, his personal liberty and fair hearing as guaranteed under the Nigerian Constitution and the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights.

Read Also: How Saboteurs Convinced Buhari Not To Release Kanu – IPOB

 ‘That the arrest of Nnamdi Kanu in Kenya by agents of the Nigerian government without due process of law is arbitrary, illegal, unlawful, unconstitutional and amounts to infringement of his fundamental rights against arbitrary arrest, to his personal liberty and to fair hearing as guaranteed under the Nigerian Constitution and the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights.

 ‘That the torture and detention of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu in Kenya by agents of the Nigerian government is illegal, unlawful, unconstitutional and amounts to infringement of the his fundamental rights against torture and to fair hearing, as guaranteed under the Nigerian Constitution and the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights.

‘That the expulsion of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu from Kenya to Nigeria by the Nigerian government and his consequent detention and planned prosecution in Charge No: FHC/ABJ/CR/383/2015 (Federal Republic of Nigeria v. Nnamdi Kanu) is illegal, unlawful, unconstitutional and amount to infringement of his fundamental rights against unlawful expulsion and detention, and to fair hearing, as guaranteed under the Nigerian Constitution and the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights’.

The Eastern Updates also reports that the suit is also seeking an order of injunction restraining the Nigerian government from taking any further step in the prosecution of Nnamdi Kanu in Charge No: FHC/ABJ/CR/383/2015 (Federal Republic of Nigeria v. Nnamdi Kanu) pursuant to his unlawful expulsion from Kenya to Nigeria.


Real Reasons Why I Joined Politics – Former COAS, Ihejirika

Real Reasons Why I Joined Politics – Former COAS, Ihejirika
Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika (rtd.)

A former Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika (rtd.), has explained that he joined politics to be able to contribute his quota as a former security chief toward the peace, security, and unity of Nigeria.

Ihejirika made this disclosure at a news conference which was monitored by The Eastern Updates in his Ovim country home in Isuikwuato Local Government Area of Abia.

He also hinged his reason on the fact that he needed a platform ‘to make myself available for service both at the state and national levels’.

He said that he did not join the All Progressives Congress (APC) ‘under pressure’ or to evade probe by the government.

The former Army chief also spoke on the current state of insecurity in the country.

‘I left office at a time Boko Haram was building up and we did our best to stem the tide,’ he said.

Read Also: Ex COAS, Lt Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika, Joins APC

He said that he had availed himself of available opportunities, including the Annual COAS Conference by the Ministry of Defence, to offer advice on how the nation’s security challenges could be surmounted.

‘I can say that a lot has been achieved by the Armed Forces in tackling Boko Haram insurgency,’ he said.

Ihejirika noted that the APC-led Federal Government had laid a solid foundation for the growth and development of the country.

He spoke against the fear that Nigerians might vote against APC in 2023 because of the numerous socio-economic challenges that have bedeviled the country since it took over power.

The former COAS said that it would not be right for anyone to say that the party had not made any meaningful impact since it formed the government in 2015.

According to him, governance is like a building block. When the foundation has been properly laid, one can now build on it.

‘I’m sure that APC has made substantial efforts toward national development since it took over power.

‘It is for the next administration to build on the achievements recorded by the present government,’ he said.

Ihejirika cited the road and railway infrastructure and other development initiatives as some of of the achievements of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.

He also hailed the federal government’s interventions in agriculture, using the Central Bank of Nigeria to drive a revolution in the sector.

‘There is, however, room for improvement in all sectors of governance in the country,’ he said.

The former COAS said that greater success against insecurity could be achieved, with necessary logistics support and incentives by the government to the security agencies.

He advised that vigilance groups should collaborate with security agencies and that the people should assist with relevant and timely information on security breaches.