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Suicide bomber kills 11 in Borno mosque attack

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A suicide bomber killed 11 people on Wednesday in an attack on a mosque in northeast Nigeria, the epicentre of the conflict with Islamist insurgency Boko Haram, two military officials, a resident and an aid worker said.

The bomber hit the mosque in the town of Gamboru in Borno state, near Nigeria’s border with Cameroon, during dawn prayers, said Ali Mustapha, an aid worker, and Lawan Abba, a resident.

The attack bears the hallmarks of Boko Haram, a jihadist group which frequently uses suicide bombers, often women and girls, to attack crowded public spaces such as mosques and markets, reports Reuters.

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Lawmaker cart away with mace in Gombe

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mace

A member of the Gombe State House of Assembly representing Akko West state constituency Alhaji Abdullah‎ Abubakar in an attempt to impeach the Minority Leader of the assembly took away the mace and run away with it during plenary

Our correspondent gathered that the Minority Leader, Mohammed Usman Haruna was reported to have held a press conference on May 5th, soon after the Ward Congress, where he condemned the processes of the Ward Congress of the All Progressives Congress in the State.

It was revealed that consequent upon this development, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), dominated assembly, felt aggrieved with the move by the minority leader and began the process of impeaching him.

However, during the process for the impeachment, it was gathered that five out of the eight members who signed for the impeachment, one signed for and against the impeachment and when asked why he did so, he said he was forced to sign the motion for the impeachment under duress.

Based on this development, which split the members equally, it was obvious that the impeachment would not hold. This led one of the members, Abdullahi Abubakar, to take the mace, at about 1:12 pm.

The lawmaker was said to have been assisted by another member, Mohammed Bello, from Gombe South state constituency to escape with the mace.

Bello was reported to have escaped through the door with the mace, while Bello held the door to keep the other members of the assembly from taking the mace back from him.

The officials of the assembly are yet to address the press as at the time of filing this report.

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Govs, Ministers shun Fayemi governorship campaign committee inauguration

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Kayode Fayemi

Governors of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and members of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) shunned the inauguration of the governorship campaign committee of the Minister of Solid Minerals, Dr. Kayode Fayemi.

Fayemi is the APC flag bearer for the Ekiti State governorship election slated for July 14. He defeated 32 other aspirants to emerge.

The governors who were to be in attendance at the inauguration were: Abubakar Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi), Chairman, Akinwunmi Dapo Ambode (Lagos), Sen. Ibukunle Amosun (Ogun), Sen. Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo), Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola (Osun), Olaritimi Akeredolu (Ondo), SAN, Abdulfatah Ahmed (Kwara), AbdulAzeez Yari (Zamfara), Godwin Obaseki (Edo), Yahaya Bello (Kogi), Mohammad Badaru Abubakar (Jigawa), Simon Lalong (Plateau), Kassim Shettima (Borno) and Mohammed Umar Jibrilla (Adamawa).

Only the governor of Ondo State and Deputy chairman of the campaign committee, Rotimi Akeredolu was present.

The Ministers who are part of the campaign committee are: Manir Dan-Ali (Defence), Abdulraham Dambazzua (Interior), Bawa Bwari Abubakar (State, Solid Minerals), Ibe Kachikwu (State, Petroleum), Babatunde Fashola (Power, Works and Housing), Rotimi Ameachi (Transport), Chris Ngige (Labour) and Isaac Adewole (Health). Only the Ministers of Health and Labour attended the inauguration.

Of a total number of 77 committee members, not up to 30 persons were in attendance at the inauguration.

However, most of the governors were in Abuja yesterday as the National Convention Committee had inaugurated its sub-committees on Wednesday where most of them were present.

Governors Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo State) and Abubakar Bagudu (Jigawa State) came to APC National Secretariat in Abuja after the inauguration. They came irrespective of the National Convention.

Ajimobi is the chairman of the Sub-Committee on Media of the National Convention Committee, while Bagudu is the chairman of the Convention Committee.

While inaugurating the campaign committee, Deputy National Chairman (North), Senator Lawal Shuaibu said the election in Ekiti was too important to the party to begin to engage in hate speech as a campaign weapon, stressing that “even if other parties will engage in hate speech, you should concentrate on winning the election.”

He said the party will not relent in its efforts to recapture the state, adding that “to show you the importance we place on the Ekiti election, I want to inform you that this election is just a little below the presidential election to us.”

Responding on behalf of the chairman, Ondo state governor, Rotimi Akeredolu said they take the task assigned to them as very important, stressing that “this is not the first time the importance of this election has been emphasized. When those of us from the south-west met with the President, he stressed the importance of the election.

“It’s importance is very great to us in the south-west and it is a task that must be accomplished. We will map out strategies to win the election because we have faced many affronts and so many challenges had been thrown at us by Fayose.

“My brother, Ayo Fayose who is there has thrown a lot of challenges at us and we must be united to confront that challenge and if we failed in this task, it means that we a not serious as a party.”

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Reduce cost of UMTE form to N3000, Reps tell JAMB

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The House of Representatives has urged the federal ministry of education to review downward the cost of Unified Tertiary Examinations (UTME) by about 50% from the current N7, 500.00 to not more than N3, 000.00 in order to make university and other tertiary education accessible and affordable.

The House also called on the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) to cut the cost of Jamb application forms and process to ensure that the cost of the other ancillary forms for changes must be free or at “the very barest minimum of N500.00”

The House, while adopting a motion by James Faleke (APC, Lagos) urged the Federal Ministry of Education to ensure that the cost of the other ‘ancillary forms’ for changes must be free or at the very barest minimum of N500.

These decisions were taken after a unanimous endorsement of motion sponsored by Hon. James Abiodun Faleke (APC, Lagos).

While leading debate on the motion, Fakele noted that the Joint Admissions Matriculation Board (JAMB) was said to have remitted the sum of N7.8 billion to the Federal Government being excess of the N12 billion made from sales of Unified Tertiary Examinations (UTME) application forms for University Admission in 2017 at the rate of N7, 500.00 each excluding incomes from the sales of other forms such as Change of Course Forms and Change of University Forms at the rate of N5, 000.00 each;

He said an estimated 250,000 candidates purchased the UTME forms bringing the income from sales of the forms to estimated sum of N2.4bn per year.

The lawmaker further noted that the cost does not include the Post UMTE Examinations that are conducted by Universities at an average cost of N2, 500 (Two Thousand Five Hundred Naira only) per candidate excluding the expenses made on logistics;

Faleke said he was aware that JAMB had a surplus of N7 billion budget in 2017, “meaning that the sum under consideration is from sales of forms only, making the Board a profit making venture to the detriment of educational and social development of the country”

According to him, the increase in the number of Universities from 12 at inception of JAMB in 1798, with less than 50,000 candidates to over 400 tertiary institutions with more than 1.7 million candidates writing the exams and indices shows only about 50% of those who wrote the examinations were admitted in the universities as at 2017.

“Further aware that JAMB as a government agency is not set up for profit making but to promote educational development of the young citizens in pursuit of their professional career;

“Worried that the proliferation of Universities to 120, 83 Polytechnics, 82 Colleges of Education and other Tertiary Institutions under JAMB purview is portraying it as a profit making venture”, he stated.

The sponsor said he was alarmed at the “allegation of the huge sum of money missing from the vaults, burning of scratch cards, lending out money made from sales of application forms, conversion of proceeds from sales of application forms to loans and Image ’empowerment’ funds to private individuals and fictitious by stories by the officials of the board”

He maintained “that being the first time such an amount is being returned to government coffers by any government agency, the management of JAMB deserves commendation for upholding the Federal Government’s Anti-Corruption policies.

“Believes that education, being a pivot upon which relational development of the nation rests, should be made available to citizens at the barest minimum cost”

The motion was unanimously adopted and referred to the committee on basic education led by Hon. Zakari Mohammed (APC, Kwara) to ensure compliance and report back in two weeks.

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