The International Press Centre Lagos (IPC) is disconcerted by reports of security surveillance of Premium Times Editor-in-Chief, Mr. Musikilu Mojeed and Reporter, Samuel Ogundipe.
A Premium Times publication disclosed that both journalists were trailed by suspected state security service (SSS) officials. The SSS agents who visited Mr. Mojeed’s home attempted to gain entrance into his Residence, but were unsuccessful.
The operatives were also reported to have monitored Mr. Ogundipe’s residence and drove off.
Possible grounds are linked to Ogundipe’s recent publication on the rift between the National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno, and Chief of Staff to the president, Abba Kyari.
A follow-up story reported the unusual and unprecedented recall of all the senior army officers deployed to the NSA’s Office, without their replacement, leaving a resource void in the NSA’s Office.
The recall, the report further revealed, was being “countermanded” by the NSA.
In the aftermath of the story, Samuel Ogundipe’s internet identity and domain are also said to have been subjected to relentless hacking attacks while he has been receiving calls from strange numbers to confirm his identity.
IPC’s Executive Director Mr. Lanre Arogundade in a statement noted that the reported incidents represent fresh onslaught on press freedom in Nigeria and aggravated assault on the right of journalists to practice freely without fear.
“Journalists who seek to provide information to the public to promote accountability should never be subjected to any form of harassment”, he said.
Mr. Arogundade therefore called on the Presidency to prevail on the DSS to immediately stop its attacks on Premium Times
The Ministry of Health in Lagos State has confirmed its first case of COVID-19 and reported it to the Federal Ministry of Health. The case, which was confirmed on the 27th of February 2020, is the first case to be reported in Nigeria since the outbreak in China in January 2020.
In a statement by Prof Akin Abayomi, Commissioner for Health, Lagos State, there case is an Italian citizen who entered Nigeria on the 25th of February from Milan, Italy for a brief business visit. He fell ill on the 26th February and was transferred to Lagos State Biosecurity Facilities for isolation and testing. COVID-19 infection was confirmed by the Virology Laboratory of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, part of the Laboratory Network of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control. The patient is clinically stable, with no serious symptoms, and is being managed at the Infectious Disease Hospital in Yaba, Lagos.
“The Government of Lagos State under the Governor as the COVID-19 Incident Commander, through the Lagos State Ministry of Health, has been strengthening measures to ensure that any outbreak in Lagos is controlled and contained quickly in collaboration with the multi-sectoral Coronavirus Preparedness Group, led by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC). We have immediately activated the State Emergency Operations Centre to respond to this case and implement firm control measures”, the statement read.
“I wish to assure all Lagosians and Nigerians that we have been strengthening our preparedness since the first confirmation of cases in China. We will use all the resources made available by the State and the Federal Government to respond to this case”, he added.
“We are working to identify all the contacts of the patient, since he arrived in Nigeria. Please, be reminded that most people who become infected may experience only a mild illness and recover easily, but it can be more severe in others, particularly the elderly and persons with other underlying chronic illnesses. All Lagosians should take care of their health and maintain hand and respiratory hygiene to protect themselves and others, including their own families, following the precautions below:
1. Regularly and thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water, and use alcohol-based hand sanitiser.
2. Maintain at least 1 & half metres (5 feet) distance between you apnd anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
3. People coughing persistently or sneezing should stay indoors or keep a social distance, but not mix with a crowd.
4. Ensure that you and people around you follow good respiratory hygiene by covering mouths and noses with a handkerchief or tissue while sneezing or coughing. You can also sneeze or cough into your sleeve at the bent elbow.Then dispose of the used tissue immediately.
5. Stay indoors if you feel unwell with symptoms, such as fever, cough and difficulty in breathing. Please call Lagos State Emergency hotlines 08023169485 or 08033565529 or 08052817243 which are available day and night.
6. Stay informed on the latest developments about COVID-19 through official channels on TV and Radio, the Social Media, including the Lagos State Ministry of Health, NCDC and Federal Ministry of Health.
Citizens must not abuse social media and indulge in spreading misinformation that causes fear and panic. The Lagos State Ministry of Health, in collaboration with Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, will continue to provide updates and will initiate all measures required to prevent the spread of any outbreak in Lagos.”
–By our reporter-
Igede Ekiti, one of the prominent towns in Ekiti State, South West Nigeria, witnessed a deluge of vehicular and human influx as dignitaries from all works of life – academics, judiciary, top Christian clerics, government officials trouped into the town last weekend to pay their last respect and bade final farewell to Deacon Lawrence Ojo Oni, an illustrious son of the land who was buried amidst fanfare after spending 87 fruitful years on earth.
At the funeral service, the Host Minister, Reverend Dr. M.O. Ige, Araromi Baptist Church, Igede Ekiti, reading from the book of 2 Timothy 4:6-8 admonished people to live purposeful on earth so that they can finish well. “How you started is not the issue. What you achieved is not the issue but how you ended it”. He said.
Speaking on behalf of the family, Dr. Charles Oni, Head, Mass Communication Department, Yaba College of Technology, Lagos, appreciated all the people that came from far and near to celebrate Pa Oni.
In his words, ” I appreciate everybody that came to celebrate our father with us. He lived a good life and we know we will all meet in heaven to part no more. Thank you for your support and love, God bless.”
Deacon Lawrence Oni before his death, was a devout Christian who served in various capacities as an usher, Sunday School teacher, leader of the Men Missionary Union, leader of the Egbe Agba Okunrin and Patron of the Royal Ambassador. He was the pioneer pastor of Baptist Church, Ifaki Ekiti.
>By Funmi Falobi<
All is set for the 8th edition of the annual ‘Connect Nigeria’ business fair. The fair, which shall attract stakeholders and industry players from the Information Communication Technology (ICT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Agritech, Fintech and many other businesses holds at the Tafawa Balewa Square, TBS, between March 6-7, 2020, with the theme, ‘2020 Vision.’
Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday in Lagos state, the Managing Director, Connect Nigeria, Mr. Emeka Okafor, said the business fair, the largest Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) gathering in Nigeria shall be a conference and business exhibition simultaneously.
“We strongly believe that if we are to get to where we need to be, thousands of businesses in Nigeria need to be viable. We rely on oil but because of changes in the world, we need to depend on other things.
This business fair will bring together businesses around the world and let them know how business is done in Nigeria and how young people can learn. It will help SME to learn how to grow and afford start-ups to raise fund,” he said.
He declared that this edition would have the hackathon section, the first of its kind in the business fair since inception. “Founder’s Institute from San Francisco would be in attendance”, he added.
On his part, Walter Bossman, Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer, Allianz Insurance, one of the partners at the business fair said the event would give opportunity to businesses especially the SME to learn how insurance would be of great importance and beneficial to them.
“We know people have their perception about insurance in Nigeria but we are interested in SME and we could see potentials in it. SME has always been neglected and it’s very critical to growth. Being the fastest growing insurance in Nigeria right now, we focus on SME sector to tell them how to manage their risk. We have a lot of fire incidents in markets in Nigeria, we need to meet the market people and sell our products which are affordable to protect their property,’ he said.
Similarly, Corporate Communication Manager, AITEO, Mr. Odianosen Masade, explained that the energy company has been supporting SME through its corporate social responsibility services including empowering youths and its host community adding, ” we are beneficial of Nigeria growth and we teach younger ones on business. “
While commending the effort of Connect Nigeria in entrepreneurial development, Abiola Ibine, Team Lead, LPG Expansion Programme, Ibile Oil & Gas Corporation, said the corporation, owned by the Lagos state government, is interested in doing business in an environment that is climate friendly by enlightening business owners on the need to be mindful of climate change.
>By Our reporter<
Hearing in the fraud case between the Federal Government and Kenneth Amadi, a former employee of Eunisell Limited, resumes on January 29, 2020. The case was to have begun on January 8, but was shifted because courts were on break.
Amadi is alleged to have obtained the sum of N2.9 billion belonging to his former employer, Eunisell Ltd under false pretences with intent to defraud.
The offenses are contrary to section 1(1)(a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and other fraud-related offences Act, CapA6, laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and punishable under section 1(3) of the same Act.
It would be recalled that when the matter was called for hearing on November 27, 2019, at the Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos, the 1st defendant was absent, while the 2nd defendant, IDID Nigeria Ltd. was represented by an employee.
Chief State Counsel from the Department of Public Prosecutions of the Federation, A.K Aliyu had informed the court that attempts were made to serve the charge on the 1st Defendant through his counsel but the lawyer from the office of the learned silk declined to accept service. However, the Defendant’s Counsel, Emeka Etiaba (SAN) told the court that they were not opposing arraignment and trial, adding it was an error of communication on the part of the junior colleague regarding the issue of acceptance of service. He then accepted the charge and court summons of behalf of the 1st Defendant
The charges against the Defendants include receiving and obtaining by false pretence, with intent to defraud, the sum of N2, 900, 000, 000 belonging to Eunisell Ltd, omitting to make full and true entry thereof in the books and accounts; suppression of data in respect of the financial transfer to Eunisell Ltd, and converting same without authority to create sufficient deposits to promote the credibility of his own company (IDID Nigeria Limited).
Meanwhile, an Abuja High Court recently dismissed a libel case filed by Kenneth Amadi, against Eunisell Limited and two others. Justice Jude Okeke, of The High Court of Justice, held that the libel or the publications having not been made out the other reliefs predicated on the defamation by way of general and special damages as claimed have no basis to stand.