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FCTA removes illegal structures in Apo Resettlement

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The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), Department of Development Control, on Sunday removed illegal structures on major road corridors and inside cashew plantations within Apo Resettlement in Abuja.

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The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the FCTA city management officials, accompanied by security personnel stormed the area with bulldozers for the operation.

They dislodged hundreds of artisans, food vendors and petty traders for allegedly operating in structures that encroached on road corridors thereby constituting public nuisance.

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NAN observed that most of the affected structures built on road corridors and cashew plantations near Urban Shelter and Angwan Tiv were marked for demolition since 2021.

Addressing newsmen at the scene of the demolition, the Director of the department, Alhaji Murktar Galadima, explained that the operation that targeted shanties and other structures constituting infractions in the city followed due process.

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Galadima described as ”greatly disturbing and major infractions”, the conversion of cashew plantations into trading and residences, as they served as safe heavens for criminals.

” As part of our process for demolition, we have to issue notices, which could be by way of marking and written notices.

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“So, we are on our weekly clean up exercise to clear shanties and other illegal structures in the city.

“The cashew planation in Apo resettlement is overtaken by activities of some persons offering catering services.

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”But from credible intelligence, what was happening was beyond eatery, as after sometimes it goes into criminality,”he said.

According to him, ”the general warning is that we will go about removing the cashew plantations, because they are now giving those into criminality a safe heaven to operate.”

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The director said that the department had concluded arrangements to start removing the cashew plantations in the area and other places.

” We are having new strategies now to make sure that any person trying to go contrary to our regulations will be prosecuted accordingly.

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”This is unlike before that we will just demolish and go.

“Residents should see us as partners, so they should always notice and report some of these infractions to us, to enable us act swiftly.

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”This will also help to save the city from security challenges, ”he said.

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Elderly Woman Falls On Her Knees To Pray For Peter Obi In Jos Rally

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As political campaigns for the 2023 general elections commenced on Wednesday, a elderly woman has been captured praying for the presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi, during a solidarity rally held in Jos, Plateau State.

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The Director-General of the Obi-Datti Campaign organization, Doyin Okupe, in a tweet on Wednesday disclosed that the LP candidate and his vice, Datti Baba Ahmed, will attend the Jos rally although the party is yet to commence campaigns officially.

”Today in Jos, HE Peter Obi & his running mate Datti-Ahmed, will honour an invitation from the Middle Belt forum to attend a solidarity rally. We are yet to commence our own campaigns.

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To comfort our students, We urge the FG to quickly resolve the lingering ASSU Crisis,” the tweet read.

Amongst persons seen at the venue to welcome the LP flag bearer was an elderly woman on her knees in the midst of other supporters praying for Peter Obi at the Rwang Pam Stadium Jos, Plateau state.

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UNIBEN releases post-UTME, DE screenings date

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The University of Benin has fixed dates for its Post Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination and Direct Entry screenings for 2022/2023 session.

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The university in a notice by its Registrar, Ademola Bobola on Wednesday in Benin, said the exercise would hold between Nov. 14 and 25.

Bobola said the screening would be conducted in designated centres at the Ugbowo main campus of the institution, using the Computer Based Test mode.

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“Only candidates who applied through JAMB for the 2022/2023 UTME and Direct Entry admission and chose the University of Benin as First Choice and scoring 200 and above for UTME candidates are eligible for this screening exercise,” the registrar said.

Bobola, however, referred admission seekers to the institution to the university’s official website.

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Presidency denies authorising Katsina security outfit to carry arms

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The Presidency has denied that any state has been issued authorisation to procure automatic weapons for its security outfit.

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Last week, Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu had accused the Federal Government of bias in refusing to allow the Western Nigeria Security Network Agency, also known as Amotekun Corps, to carry sophisticated firearms, while allegedly granting approval to the Katsina State security outfit to carry sophisticated firearms.

That was as the Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba said that quasi-security outfits established by state governments have no legal basis to function during the 2023 general elections.

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In a statement on Tuesday, the Presidency said the possession of automatic weapons and AK-47 remains illegal in the country.

“The Presidency wishes to strongly assert that there is no state, not Katsina, not any other state in the federation, that has been authorized to procure automatic weapons for their security outfits,” the statement reads.

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“Under this administration, the President has repeatedly made it clear that nobody is allowed to illegally carry AK-47 or any other automatic weapons and that they must surrender them”.

The Presidency however said neither Katsina nor Ondo is allowed to purchase automatic weapons for security outfits.

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“Under the existing regulations, only the Office of the National Security Adviser can issue such authorization, upon proper clearance by the President and Commander-in-Chief and as it is at this moment, no such approvals have been issued to any state government.

“In the specific Katsina State often cited, the Governor, Aminu Bello Masari wrote to explain that the administration invited the Provost of the Civil Defence Training College in Katsina to train their vigilantes for a five-day period….

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“in the handling and operations of Pump Action Rifles,” emphasising that “the vigilantes were not trained to take over the responsibilities of the security agencies of the Federal Government of Nigeria but to assist them”.

The Presidency added that it “appreciates the active involvement of states with security matters. As they continue to expand their capabilities as well as their active collaboration with law enforcement agencies of the federation, the joint efforts continue to yield good results, thwarting attempts of terrorists to wreak havoc and destruction on communities”.

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President Muhammadu Buhari was quoted as saying he has received reports “of acts of utmost bravery and professionalism” by operatives of state security outfits.

“He thanked them for their alertness that is helping to defeat nefarious plots against targets at grassroots levels”, the statement added.

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Furthermore, the Presidency called on leaders at various levels “to exercise restraint in their speech, even as we are in a political season”.

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