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Insecurity Displaces Two Million in Northern Nigeria

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2 soldiers die after terrorist attacks in Niger

The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouk, has disclosed that no fewer than two million Nigerians are living as internally displaced persons (IDP).

This, she said, is due to terrorist activities in the North-east of Nigeria, as well as banditry and other forms of criminal activities in the North-west and other parts of the country.

The minister spoke on the level of dislocation that humanitarian crises had inflicted on Nigeria after leading a delegation to visit President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House in Abuja, the capital.

According to her, the ministry has been doing as much as the resources at its disposal would permit to cater for the needs of all IDPs in different parts of the country.

“As at today, we have over two million displaced persons in the country. Ranging from those displaced by insurgency, armed banditry, communal clashes and so on and so forth, she said

“The mandate of the ministry is to provide effective communication of national and international humanitarian interventions, ensure strategic disaster education and response as well as to formulate and implement policies and programmes geared towards social protection and inclusion of our citizens.

“So, the ministry is doing its best to see that people who are displaced in this country are given the necessary support by way of supporting their livelihoods, rebuild their homes in areas of disasters and settling those who have fled their places seeking for refuge, provided their communities are safe for them to return.

“This is what we are working on and we hope to achieve the desired result.”

She said she led others to visit the president in appreciation of the attention and priority that his administration has devoted to people living with disabilities, adding that this is the administration that has ever given such attention to people with special needs.

“Today is a very important day for us and the disability community. We are here on a thank you visit to Mr. President. First, for his support on the issues of persons with disabilities in this country.

“You may recall that in January 2019, the President assented to the bill on the prohibition and discrimination against persons with disabilities in this country, that was the first milestone, the President also graciously appointed the chairman, board members and the executive secretary of the National Commission for Persons with Disabilities.

“So, this is a visit to demonstrate our appreciation and our commitment to the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.

“That was followed by the fulfilment of Mr. President’s campaign promise to the disabilities community, where he promised to sign the Disabilities Act when he comes on board.

“That has been done and the commission has been created. So the next takeaway is for Mr. President to issue an executive order for compliance with this Act, especially in the area of access, where most of our public and private buildings are not really friendly to persons with disabilities.

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East Africa News

Zambian President Grants 246 Death Row Inmates Clemency

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President Edgar Lungu of Zambia has removed 246 inmates, who were on death row, and commutated their sentences to life sentences.

Minister of Home Affairs, Stephen Kampyongo, on Wednesday, said that among the inmates includes 225 males and 21 females.

He announced the commuting of the sentences during an event held at Mukobeko Maximum Prison in central Zambia’s Kabwe town which was streamed live on Facebook.

He made the clemency of death to life sentences for over 500 after 332 inmates had their sentences commutated in 2015.

He said the commutation of sentences of inmates would help decongest the section of condemned inmates at the prison which was meant for 50 people but now has over 400 inmates.

The move, he said, was also meant to protect inmates from contracting COVID-19.

In spite of the death penalty being on the country’s statutes, Zambia has not carried out any execution since 1997.

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Nigeria Confirms 15 Additional COVID-19 Deaths

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has confirmed 15 additional deaths from COVID-19 complications, bringing the total number of death toll in the country to 1,522.

The NCDC disclosed this on its website.

The centre also said that 1,303 new cases of COVID-19 was recorded, bringing the total number of infection in the country to 124,299.

The new infections were reported in 24 states and the Federal Capital Territory.

The centre said Lagos, FCT and Nasarawa recorded the highest number of COVID-19 infections on Monday, with 478 , 211 and 83 cases respectively.

Others state with new infections are Rivers-72, Kwara-42, Edo-36, Ondo-34, Benue-32, Kaduna-32, Katsina-26, Plateau-26, Kano-25, Taraba-25, Osun-22, Delta-21, Oyo-21, Niger-19, Sokoto-18, Ebonyi-17, Ekiti-14, Gombe-13, Ogun-12, Bauchi-11, Zamfara-eight, Borno-four and Jigawa-one.

The 1,270,523 people have been tested since the first confirmed case of COVID-19 was recorded on Feb. 27, 2020.

The agency also announced that 917 patients have been discharged from isolation centres across the country after testing negative to the virus , raising the total number of patients discharged to 99,276.

It added that the discharged included 542 community recoveries in Lagos State, 103 in Plateau and 22 in Kwara, managed in line with NCDC guidelines.

The NCDC noted that a multi-sectoral national Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) activated at Level III, is coordinating response activities nationwide.

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Police Rescue 5 Newborns from ‘Baby Factory’ in Anambra, Southeast Nigeria

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The Nigerian Police have rescued five newborns from a baby factory in Anambra State, southeast Nigeria.

According to CSP Haruna Ahmed – the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) in the state – 10 suspects were arrested over their roles in the baby factory where young girls are impregnated and their babies sold by human traffickers.

Mohammed, in a statement on Wednesday, said three more children and five pregnant girls were also rescued in a raid on the factory.

“On January 26, at about 7 a.m., following an intelligence report, police operatives attached to the SIB and Area Command, Oraifite, coordinated by the Area Commander, ACP Afolabi Wilfred raided the house.

“The house which belonged to one Melvina Uju Uba is located opposite Nnamdi Azikiwe Orthopedic Teaching Hospital Oba in Idemili South LGA of Anambra state,” he said.

The spokesman listed the arrested suspects as Edna Nnadi, 37, Ujunwa Nweke, 25, Izuchukwu Uba, 24, Chinasa Ibeh, 19, Peace Effiong, 25, Gift Collins, 20, and Chimkaso Kingsley, 25.

Others are Happiness Monday, 18, Chioma Okonkwo, 25, and Uchechukwu Nwankwo, 18.

According to Mohammed, five of the suspects are heavily pregnant.

The rescued children would be handed over to the Ministry of Social Welfare, Children and Women’s Affairs for proper care.

He added that efforts are being intensified to apprehend other accomplices in order to bring them to justice.

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