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Nigeria’s Lagos Announces Phased Resumption For Public, Private Schools2 minutes read

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Nigeria’s commercial city, Lagos, on Sunday, announced plans for both public and private schools’ resumption after the lockdown as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Commissioner for Education, Mrs Folasade Adefisayo, said in a statement that both public and private schools were to reopen for a new 2020/2021 academic session.

”We also wish to congratulate SS3 students who have successfully completed their WASSCE exams and urge them to stay safe even as they await their results,” Adefisayo said.

She said that for the public schools, the ministry would be adopting a phased approach to opening the schools.

According to her, this phased approach to opening will enable public schools meet COVID-19 social distance rules and safety protocols.

”This will help us watch the behaviour of the pandemic as we gradually open up our schools.

”The present JS3 and SS2 students in public schools in the state are to resume classes from Monday, 21st of September, 2020.

”The resumption will permit the present JS3 students who are already in an exit class to revise and get adequately prepared for their forthcoming Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) organised by the Lagos State Examination Board.

“It is scheduled between Tuesday, 6th and Monday, 12th of October, 2020. The resumption will also afford the present SS2 students an opportunity to prepare effectively for their transition to SS3,” she said.

The commissioner said that the scheduled dates and venues for Entrance Examination into Lagos State Model Colleges would soon be announced by the State Examination Board.

Adefisayo assured parents that announcements for opening of the other classes would occur as soon as the state government was certain of their safety.

She said that in the meantime, the unopened classes in public schools would continue their lessons on the various distance learning platforms (Online platform, radio, television and WhatsApp).

She added that the next phase for physical resumption would be announced in due course.

Adefisayo said that private primary and secondary schools in the state were permitted to resume from Monday, Sept. 21, 2020.

She said that the state government strongly encouraged school owners to put safety first and open in phases similar to the plans for public schools.

According to her, phased opening also includes strategies for staggered resumption in the mornings, classes on alternate days during the week and teaching through various distance learning methods.

”Schools must also comply with safety protocols and hygiene guidelines as instructed by the state government through the Office of Education Quality Assurance (OEQA).

”The office of education quality assurance will continue to monitor and evaluate schools’ preparedness.

”Please note that pre-primary classes and schools in both public and private schools will remain closed until further announcements are made.

”The state government wishes to remind schools that the pandemic is still with us and we must in all situations, make the safety of our children, teachers, parents and our community as a whole, our first priority,” she said.

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Nigeria’s EFCC Fail In Bid To Get Arrest Warrant For Ex-Minister, Diezani

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The Federal High Court, Abuja, on Wednesday, refused to grant the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) application seeking the court order on the issuance of a warrant of arrest against former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke.

Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu held that an affidavit with evidence in support to proof that the earlier court summon granted the agency had failed in the extradition of Diezani must be filed by the commission before another request could be made.

Ojukwu noted that the EFCC had informed the court that the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice hinted that the arrest warrant was needed to further give the international police (INTERPOL) the impetus to bring the defendant to Nigeria to answer to charges against her.

The judge, however, said it would give the anti-graft agency a room to put its house in order in the trial of the ex-minister.

“I have carefully perused the application of the prosecution. The earlier order of this court was made pursuant to Section 831 of Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA),” she said.

According to the judge, court orders are not made in vain.

“It is my view that the summon should have assisted in the extradition of the defendant by the Office of the AGF.

“Today, the defendant is not in court and no reason was given. I am being informed that the defendant is believed to be in the United Kingdom (UK).

“The learner counsel also informed the court that the extradition process has failed as a result of the absence of the warrant of arrest.

“But if that is the case, learner counsel shall file an affidavit to that effect supported by evidence from the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation.

“I hereby give you time to put your house in order,” the judge held.

Justice Ojukwu then adjourned the matter until Dec. 3 for report and arraignment of the defendant.

Earlier at the resumed hearing on Wednesday, the EFCC’s Lawyer, Farouk Abdullah reminded the court of the orders it gave and that the anti-graft agency had complied with them.

“This is evident by an affidavit of compliance filed in this case and before your lordship. It was filed on Oct 8, 2020,” he said.

He said since the defendant was not in court, the EFCC would urge the court to issue an arrest warrant against Diezani.

“My lord, this honourable court issued a summon for the defendant to appear today but the defendant has failed to appear.

“Giving the aforesaid fact, I apply that a warrant of arrest be issued against the defendant pursuant to Section 83(1b) of the ACJA 2015.

“We urge the court, in making the order, to direct all law enforcement agencies and the INTERPOL to arrest the defendant anywhere she is sighted and be brought before the court to answer to the allegation made against her before this honourable court,” he said.

According to the lawyer, we are also liaising with the office of AGF and Minister of Justice to get in touch with any country that may be hosting the defendant for the purposes of extradition in line with Extradition Act and General Convention of Nations.

He said since the summon had not been able to achieve the desired result, the need for a warrant of arrest cannot be over-emphasised.

The court had, on July 24, ordered the former minister to appeal before it and answer to the money laundering charge filed against her by the EFCC.

The judge gave the ruling on an ex-parte motion marked FHC/ABJ/CR/208/2018 brought by the EFCC’s Lawyer, Abdullah.

Ojukwu ordered the issuance of summons on Diezani for her to be arraigned on the charge.

The EFCC had accused the former minister of fleeing the country for the UK in order to escape justice.

The judge, who ordered that the court’s summons be published on the website of the anti-corruption agency and a national daily in a conspicuous manner, said the development would make it easier for Diezani to be aware of the invitation.

Abdallah had, while arguing the motion, noted that since Diezani allegedly fled the country, it was difficult to get her back to respond to the various criminal allegations against her.

He said there was the need for a court’s summons or arrest warrant to compel her appearance in court.

The lawyer, in a document filed along with the motion ex-parte, said it sought to question Diezani, without success, in relation to many allegations against her, including “her role as the Minister of Petroleum Resources and her role in the award of Strategic Alliance Agreement (SAA) to Septa Energy Limited, Atlantic Energy Drilling Concept Limited and Atlantic Energy Brass Development Limited by NNPC.

He said it also wanted Diezani to respond to questions about “her role in the chartering of private jets by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and Ministry of Petroleum Resources and her role in the award of contracts by NNPC to Marine and Logistics Services Limited.”

Abdallah said the agency was investigating Diezani’s business relationships with Mr. Donald Amamgbo, Mr. Afam Nwokedi, Chief lkpea Leemon, Miss Olatimbo Bukola Ayinde, Mr Benedict Peters, Christopher Aire, Harcourt Adukeh, Julian Osula, Dauda Lawal, Nnamdi Okonkwo, Mr. Leno Laithan, Sahara Energy Group and Midwestern Oil Limited.

He added that Dezani was also required to clear air on “her role in financing the 2015 general elections, particularly the money that were warehoused at Fidelity Bank Plc in 2015 prior to the elections.”

He said it equally wanted the ex-minister to speak on several items, documents and Jewelry recovered from her house at No: 10, Chiluba Close, off Jose Marti Street, Asokoro, Abuja, and some identified property that was linked to her In Nigeria, UK, United States of America (USA), United Arab Emirate (UAE) and South Africa.

The judge then adjourned the matter until Oct. 28 for Diezani to attend court for the purpose of her arraignment on the pending money laundering charge.

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#EndSARS: Four Police Officers Killed, 11 Stations Razed In Anambra, Says CP

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Hoodlums that hijacked anti-police brutality protests killed no fewer than four policemen in Anambra, a state in southeast Nigeria.

According to Commissioner of Police (CP), John Abang, the hoodlums also set ablaze 11 police stations in the state.

Abang made the revelation on Wednesday when he paraded 17 suspected hoodlums.

The list of 17 suspects paraded indicated that 10 of them were indigenes of Anambra, four from Ebonyi and three from Abia.

Abang said 11 Police Stations were burnt down and six vandalised during which the hoodlums carted away motorcycles, ammunition and other valuables.

He said about 20 vehicles were razed, including an Armoured Personnel Carrier and patrol vehicles.

The Commissioner who applauded his men for the professionalism with which they managed the crisis, said lives of police officers in the state were still in danger as hoodlums were still on their trail and most cannot go home.

“It is common knowledge that hoodlums acting under the guise of the “EndSARS” protest attacked Police Stations in some parts of the State which resulted into loss of lives, looting and wanton destruction of property

“The hoodlums set ablaze 11 Police Stations, vandalised six, burnt over 20 vehicles, including patrol and exhibit vehicles and an Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC).

“The Police also lost some rifles during the attacks.

“In the course of these heinous acts, the hoodlums murdered four police officers, including the DPO of Osumenyi Division, CSP Akpan Joseph, ASP Agu Micheal, the Station Officer and a young Police Corporal, Udegbunam Sunday Celestine, while leaving two others injured.

“In their state of callousness, the hoodlums also murdered and beheaded Insp. John Oche, attached to the Anti- Cultism Unit and burnt his body while parading the streets with the deceased policeman’s head,” he said.

Abang said other private and public property were vandalised and looted by the hoodlums, including the state Revenue House, OCHA Brigade office and private trucks loaded with goods were attacked and valuable property looted.

He said the loss of lives and the destruction of property would have been more if his officers and men did not protect Police property gallantly.

The Police Commissioner thanked Gov. Willie Obiano, traditional rulers and town unions for their support for the Police at this trying time and for their efforts at bringing peace to the state.

“Despite concerted efforts by the hoodlums to create a state of lawlessness in Anambra, the Command stood its ground and repelled their attacks in various formations such as Area Commands in Onitsha, Ogidi, Awada, CPS Onitsha, Inland town and the B Division.

“Meanwhile, in the course of the decisive action by the Police, 17 suspects were arrested in connection with the incidents with several exhibits, including one AK47 Rifle stolen from Ogbunike Division, which has been recovered by operatives of the Command,” he added

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Nigeria’s Rivers To Employ 5,000 Youths

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Nigeria’s Rivers State Government has announced plans to employ no fewer than 5,000 youths into its civil civil service.

The Rivers Executive Council approved the employment at a meeting presided over by Governor Nyesom Wike at Government House, Port Harcourt, on Wednesday.

Mr Kelvin Ebiri, the Special Assistant (Media) to the Governor, said that the government’s plan was announced to journalists by the Commissioner for Employment Generation and Empowerment, Mr. Sylvanus Nwankwo.

Ebiri quoted Nwankwo as saying that the youth to be employed must not be more than 35 years old.

He said there were existing vacancies in the civil service needing : engineers, lawyers, medical doctors, technicians and other fields of profession that the youths would fill.

Also, the Commissioner for Information and Communications, Mr Paulinus Nsirim, said that the recruitment drive undertaken by the Wike-led administration would bridge the employment gap in Rivers.

Nsirim also said that the council approved that civil servants that were asked to be working from home during COVID-19 pandemic lockdown were asked to resume work on Nov. 2.

“Civil servants on Grade Level 1 to Grade Level 10 who have been working from t home because of COVID-19 pandemic lockdown are to resume work on Monday, Nov. 2, 2020.

“ Similarly, bars that had been closed down since COVID-19 lockdown are to open , while night clubs will remain closed” he said.

According to the Commissioner , the council also approved a minor cabinet reshuffle that moves the Commissioner for Chieftaincy and Community Affairs to take charge of the Ministry of Works.

He said the current Commissioner for Works would now head the Ministry of Urban Development and Physical Planning, while the commissioner he is replacing moves to the Ministry of Transport.

Nsirim stated that the current Commissioner for Transport would now be in charge of the Ministry of Chieftaincy and Community Affairs.

The Commissioner also said that the council decided that the Rebisi Flyover would be inaugurated on Nov. 7 by the Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola.

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