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Niger Delta Groups Condemn Smear Campaign On Kachikwu

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Niger Delta Groups Condemn Smear Campaign On Kachikwu

A coalition of leaders from nine states of the Niger Delta on Wednesday criticised ongoing smear campaign targeted at Dr Ibe Kachikwu, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources.

The leaders, who spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Yenagoa, said that unwarranted attacks to tarnish the image of Kachikwu were unacceptable.

A Niger Delta activist, Prince Tonye Jemenimiema, said that frivolous allegations of operating a foreign account while holding a public office was laughable and mischievous.

He said that Kachikwu had a fruitful career in the international oil sector spanning several decades and worked in many countries before he rose to become a Vice President at Exxonmobil before his appointment.

Jemenimiema who is also President Niger Delta Youth for Practical Development noted that the attempt by certain interest groups to discredit Kachikwu who is performing creditably in the oil and gas sector was regrettable.

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The youth leader said it was an irony that Kachikwu, who midwifed reforms in the downstream sector of the oil industry and brokered peace in Niger Delta that stabilised oil production, could be targeted by critics.

He said that the region would not condone further attacks on the Minister whose laudable polices had translated to transparency in the oil sector adding that those affected by Kachikwu’s reforms were behind the attacks.

“It is interesting that the cabal is out again, masquerading in another disguise with bogus allegations to demonise the gentle, God fearing and upright personality in the face of the public.

“This is a man who brought transparency and orderliness to the system. One may ask what is the reputation of the faceless group behind these spurious allegations and campaign of calumny.

“What have they contributed towards the advancement of the country?

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“We trust that the frivolous litigation will fall like a pack of cards and the judiciary will not sacrifice the innocent for the wicked.

“We are very worried and concerned over the safety of our brother; who knows if such evil collaborators may resort to going after his life.

“We know Kachikwu is innocent and must not bow to any pressure to bend him,” Jemenimiema said.

Also Pastor Tiedor Olayinka, President, Niger Delta Youths Coalition for Peace and Progress, berated those who felt envious and intimidated by Kachikwu’s verifiable records.

“Those affected by the reforms carried out under Kachikwu are the ones operating behind the scene to cause Kachikwu’s downfall.

“The steady attacks on Kachikwu’s hard earned reputation is one too many. They say when you want to kill a dog you hang him a bad name. Who is desperate to take Kachikwu’s office?

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“Who is offended by his giant strides as reforming the sector and bringing sanity to the once ailing industry?

“It is evident that result achieved by the current administration is traceable to Kachikwu.

“If it is not degree classification it is now baseless and unfounded allegations asking a man who rose up to the rank of Vice President of a multinational oil firm why he is operating foreign account.

“These have to stop,” Olayinka said.

He urged the public to be wary of groups whose stock in trade was to spread malicious false allegations against public office holders to blackmail them to succumb to their demands for gratification.

He urged the federal government to scrutinise those making allegations merely to attract attention and sanction them if investigation showed that such allegations were false.

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Nigerian News

NIMC Extends Diaspora Enrolment Of Nigerians To UK, UAE

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NIMC Extends Diaspora Enrolment Of Nigerians To UK, UAE

The National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) has extended enrolment of Nigerians under the diaspora registration programme to the United Kingdom and United Arab Emirates.

Commission spokesperson, Loveday Ogbonna, said the commission has decided to extend the enrolment to these two countries after the huge success in South Africa.

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Ogbonna says the extension is in line with NIMC’s mandate to ensure all Nigerian citizens at home and abroad, as well as legal residents in Nigeria, were enrolled into the national identity database and issued the unique national identification number.

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Ogbonna said DEFCON systems limited, DSL, and the National Authentication Limited (NEAL) are the two Nigerian companies licensed by NIMC to handle the enrolment services across the globe to ensure best-in-class services and inclusivity.

He said the enrolment will involve demographic & biometric data capture of all Nigerian citizens residing in the two countries.

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The UAE programme is scheduled to take off today, while the UK programme kicks off on Friday.

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Nigerian News

Offa Robbery: Court Grants Defence Request To Examine Gunshot Injuries

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Offa Robbery: Court Grants Defence Request To Examine Gunshot Injuries

A Kwara State High Court sitting in Ilorin has ruled in favor of the defence counsel who asked for an independent examination of the alleged gunshot injuries sustained by three accused persons alleged to have participated in last year’s robbery incident in Offa.

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Thirty-three persons, including nine policemen, were killed during the robbery, while five accused persons are standing trial.

But the court refused a post-mortem examination on the corpse of the principal suspect in the robbery incident, Michael Adikwu, whom the accused persons claimed, was deliberately killed by a police inspector while in custody at the force headquarters in Abuja.

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Earlier, the 5th accused person (Niyi Ogundiran), had narrated to the court how the police extracted confessional statements from him under duress.

The case has been adjourned till early April.

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Nigerian News

There Are Plans To Revisit And Deliver The National Carrier Project – Aviation Minister

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There Are Plans To Revisit And Deliver The National Carrier Project - Aviation Minister

Minister of State for Aviation, Hadi Sirika, has revealed that there are plans to deliver the national carrier project during president Buhari’s administration.

Sirika says the federal government will revisit the project which he describes as the brain-child of the president.  He said the president would not let it die.

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The minister said this while defending the ministry’s budget before the senate committee on aviation in Abuja.

He said the ministry only suspended the project to put adequate measures in place.  He also expressed concern that Nigeria is not able to boast of a national carrier, despite being a huge aviation market.

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The minister says the national carrier project is a Public Private Partnership (PPP). The private sector will lead and deliver, while the government will play its role.

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He said the process would be transparent and would be done through local and international fora and media.

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