Below are the headlines found on The Daily Sun Online Newspaper for today, Friday, 23 February, 2018.

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
Two of the girls abducted by Boko Haram at the Government Girls Science Technical College (GGSTC) Dapchi, Yobe State, on Monday have been reported dead in a failed rescue operation.

Their bodies were recovered on Wednesday by the Nigerian military.

This is even as the Federal Government yesterday confirmed the abduction, admitting that many of the schoolgirls were yet to be found.

Also yesterday, Governor Ibrahim Gaidam said none of the students in captivity of Boko Haram insurgents were rescued.

According to agency report two of the girls were killed while some others were still missing.

The report said a resident and a local government official said there was jubilation in Dapchi community over the rescue of some of the girls.

“Everybody is celebrating their coming with songs and praises to God Almighty,” said Babagana Umar, one of the parents whose daughter had disappeared.

“The only sad news is that two girls were dead without explanation.”

Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who led the Federal Government delegation to Dapchi headquarters of Bursari Local Government, declared that some of the girls were still missing and unaccounted for.

“What we know as at today (Thursday) is that some of the girls are still unaccounted for. That is because some of them are still trickling back to the school,” he said without giving details of the number of girls rescued or seen.

He said the responses from the military and Yobe State government was commendable:

“Since this thing happened, I have been in touch with the governor, the theatre commander and the GOC (General Officer Commanding).”

He said Boko Haram was looking for oxygen to breath having been pushed out of Sambisa and other fringes. Mohammed was accompanied by the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Hajiya Khadija Abba Ibrahim and a representative of the Minister of Defense.  And speaking when he visited community yesterday, Gaidam told family members of the students to keep praying that the girls should be found.

The state government, however, regretted that it issued the statement, claiming some of the girls were rescued based on the “information provided by one of the security agencies involved in the fight against Boko Haram,” which it had no reason to doubt.

Another statement issued yesterday by Abdullahi Bego, Director General Press Affairs said:

“The public may recall that we issued a statement last night (Wednesday) in which we announced that some of the girls at Government Girls Science Technical College (GGSTC), Dapchi, who went missing after Boko Haram terrorists had stormed their school last Monday were rescued by officers and men of the Nigerian Army who are currently executing the war against the Boko Haram insurgents.

“We have now established that the information we relied on to make the statement was not credible. The Yobe State Government apologises for that.”

A parent whose two daughters are among those missing, Modu Goniri, 45, Personal Assistant to the Commissioner for Works, was categorical that about 94 schoolgirls were still missing.

The governor reportedly pleaded with affected family members and the people

of the community to keep praying to God for the release of their daughters.

Residents of Dapchi said they were unhappy about government announcement on Wednesday night, claiming some of the girls were rescued and in save hands of the military.

Abdul Dapchi, a resident, said Gaidam lost control of the crowd immediately he made the confession.

“We were all angry. How could they have deceived us all along?”

Dapchi, whose two sisters were among the abducted girls, lamented that the community became infuriated at Gaidam after his confession that no girl was actually rescued on Wednesday.

His daughters, Aisha, 18 and Falmata, 17 both SSSII students are among the missing.

 “It is not true that some girls were rescued. About 94 of the girls are still missing, including two of my daughters,” Modu said.

He denied that the Nigerian military rescued some girls. He equally denied that 48 of the girls turned up the following morning after the Boko Haram attacked the school.

“No one can actually say the whereabouts of the girls, they have disappeared completely without any trace,” Modu insisted.

Meanwhile, the three senators from Yobe State, namely, Ahmad Lawan, Bukar Abba Ibrahim and Mohammed Hassan, yesterday, clashed over the abduction of Dapchi schoolgirls on the floor of the Senate.

They clashed when Ibrahim raised a point of order to draw the attention of his colleagues to conflicting reports about the whereabouts of over 100 female students.

Trouble started as soon as the Senate Leader, Lawan, concluded his remarks. He had hailed the efforts of Governor, Mr. Geidam.

“I want to commend Geidam for ensuring that parents were comforted and for sending officials of the Ministry of Education to go round the families and ensure that they took head counts of the girls from that school,” Lawan had noted.

Obviously infuriated, Hassan described Lawan’s comments as “quite disheartening to hear.” He maintained that the governor failed in protecting the students in the state.

He recalled five attacks on public schools in the state in recent times and concluded that the governor had abdicated his duties as the chief security officer of the Boko Haram ravaged state.

Hassan said: “In 2013, a secondary school in Potiskum was attacked, where over 70 children were killed. A year after, another secondary school in Mamudu was attacked where school children were slaughtered. There was another attack in Yadin Buni where students were attacked. The state university too was attacked and now we have this one.

“This is quite disheartening to hear, with due respect to Senator Lawan, to commend the state government for serially failing to protect our students. This is the primary responsibility of the government; to protect the lives and properties of its citizen.

“The state government of Yobe has serially failed in this regard. It has abdicated its primary responsibility in doing that.”


At this point, Lawan protested: “I have my reasons for commending the president, the governor and government of Yobe State.

“If my colleague doesn’t see those reasons and he has his perspective, he doesn’t have to refer to me that what I said is not in order.

“I have my facts, he has his facts. I will advise, that he states his fact without making reference to me.”

Ibrahim, said: “President Muhammadu Buhari sent three of his most senior ministers to Yobe to continue reporting to him on regular basis and not a single person has so far been killed.

“The abduction is yet not confirmed. The ministers and military are on the ground.”

Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, who presided, defended Hassan. He said the senator was at liberty to disagree with Lawan. He also claimed that he was unaware of any reference to Lawan by Hassan.

He said: “He didn’t mention your name. He was only talking about the governor. If he had mentioned you, it would be driven to that aspect you read.

“So concentrate on what you want to say. Senate leader is entitled to praise the government and you are also entitled to condemn them. This is the theatre of democracy.”

Adopting the two prayers of the motion, the Senate condemned the attack on the school and issue of insurgency.

It also urged the Federal Government to quickly recover the girls so as not to repeat the issue of the Chibok girls’ experience of April 2014 in Borno State.

Also yesterday, the crisis rocking Northern Senators’ Forum (NSF), resurfaced.

Ali Wakil, who was absent when Abdullahi Adamu was sacked as chairman of the NSF, accused some northern senators of bypassing due process in his (Adamu) removal.

He called out the Senate spokesman Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi and claimed that he led two other senators (Shehu Sani and Isah Hamman Misau) to the press centre where newsmen were briefed.

He alleged: “When the announcement was made, the spokesman of the Senate led some senators to the press centre to make some of these bombastic statements.

“By this, I want to say that my privilege has been breached because my constituents and other concerned northerners have also expressed their disgust that why are we trying to destroy our leadership. I want the Senate to take judicial note of what I am saying.”

The Senate spokesman immediately reacted, saying, “I need to react to what Wakil alleged. I did not address the media as a northern senator.

“I addressed the media in my capacity as spokesman of the Senate. It is on record that whenever I address the media, I always go with some lawmakers.

“I did the same thing on Wednesday when I addressed newsmen. I needed to set these records straight.”

The European Union (EU), also said the abduction of the schoolgirls was an attack on humanity.

In a statement by the EU spokesperson for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Catherine Ray, in Abuja the EU said: “Targeting children and abducting young girls as they seek to attend school is an attack on our common humanity.”

It expressed solidarity with the affected families and the people of Nigeria.

UNICEF said on its part said teachers and school children are still traumatised by the eight years of Boko Haram conflict in the northeast states,.

Its Chief Field Officer, Borno State Office, Geoffrey Ijumba, said, “a lot of teachers and school children have experienced blood, killing and destruction.”

He said the teachers and students were still traumatised to settle down in the school environment due to the violence of the eight years.

He said UNICEF is building the resilence capacity of the teachers to ensue they are stable psychologically to teach equally traumatised students.

In a separate development, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), disagreed with  security agencies over claims that 48 out of the 94 schoolgirls were rescued.

Speaking at the commencement of the PDP Board of Trustees (BoT) meeting in Abuja yesterday, the party’s national chairman, Prince Uche Secondus, accused the Federal Government of “misleading Nigerians that some of the kidnapped girls from Yobe have been rescued, but we have authentic information that the girls have not been rescued.”

Secondus also alleged that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) already put modalities in place to rig the election in favour of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

Consequently, the PDP chairman charged members of the party BoT to go home and mobilise their people for the 2019 general elections.

Earlier, BoT chairman, Jubrin Walid, admonished members aggrieved over the last convention of the party to put the past behind, noting that power comes only from God.

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
Former Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika, yesterday, returned to the investigative room of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for further questioning in relation to the $2.1 billion arms procurement fund for the fight against insurgency in the North East approved by the President Goodluck Jonathan administration. 

Ihejirika was army chief from September 2010 to January 2014, a period when Boko Haram activities were high.

For over nine hours on Wednesday, Ihejirika was questioned by investigators allegedly based on the reports and recommendations of the presidential panel commissioned to audit defence equipment procurement by President Mohammadu Buhari.

The procurement was handled by the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA).

Yesterday’s probe was limited to scrutiny of documents Ihejirika was asked to bring, in addition to what he brought on Wednesday, it was learnt.

The former army chief was, however, granted administrative bail while his international passport was confiscated.

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
Ex-wife of President Olusegun Obasanjo and a political activist, Mrs. Taiwo Obasanjo, has dismissed the new coalition  against President Muhammadu Buhari, being engineered his her former husband,  saying it would backfire.

In this interview in Lagos, Mrs. Obasanjo talked about Obasanjo’s letter to Buhari, the polity, his son and others.

 Former President Olusegun Obasanjo wrote a letter to President Buhari, advising him not to seek re-election and accusing him of nepotism and poor performance. Do you have to say?

I genuinely love Buhari as a father, but I am also not in support of him seeking re-election in 2019. It is unfortunate that Buhari is dealing with a problem that did not originate from him.  However, Obasanjo should not be the one writing letters all the time. He should not be the one forming a political coalition for Nigerians. I do not know why Nigerians cannot think. Whoever Obasanjo supports to emerge as President would also give us hell, because they would certainly clash. He would want to control that person and there would be problems between them.

The coalition is a scheme, which would backfire on him and I would tell you why. Instead of Obasanjo to start a political coalition, he should rather lead a coalition for genuine repentance for the nation. He has a strong God-given spiritual influence on this nation but if he continues with the coalition, there would be a big storm because he has offended God. He is over 80; so he should forget about any coalition and focus on bringing Nigeria back to God. God has given him more than enough grace to function as a leader and a father of the nation to lead the country to repentance.

Nigerians should not allow Chief Olusegun Obasanjo to give us any coalition. He is part of the problem in Nigeria, not Buhari. Nigerians all over the world should say a big “NO” to his leadership. He has failed God and he is the troubler of our nation and his family. Let other leaders and elders take over from him. Chief Olusegun Obasanjo has not made peace with God. He has not genuinely repented of his disobedience.

 A prayer coalition, as you are proposing, is already being done by Gen. Yakubu Gowon through his Nigeria Prays progamme. Is that not enough?

Everyone has a God-given assignment. God has deposited too much authority in Obasanjo to liberate Nigeria because the country is under serious affliction. Buhari is honest, but he is overwhelmed because there is a spiritual governing power that is subjecting the nation to hardship and problems.

 Other countries are prospering. Are you saying there is no demonic powers in them? Do we need prayers before we pay civil servants their salaries or to build infrastructure? Don’t you think our problem is that of incompetence?

A nation can be destroyed or liberated on account of one person. God has revealed the problems caused by Obasanjo and he knows that he has done a number of things wrong. God has also given him the solution to the problems. Even if we elect one million leaders, we would still have problems, unless we do what God wants us to do. Buhari didn’t start the problems of Nigeria. A man can mean well for this nation, but forces beyond his control would not allow him function. Obasanjo should not even be a part of that coalition. He should leave Nigerians to elect its own leader because he is not doing the right thing.  He was president for eight years and he even wanted a third term.

Obasanjo should have built a solid, glorious and powerful foundation for other leaders coming behind him to work on. He should have turned Nigeria into Dubai, turned the Niger Delta into a beautiful city. He should have greatly industrialised our economy, should have built networks of roads all over the nation, should have given us 4th and 5th mainland bridges in Lagos and ring roads of overhead bridges for easy access and exit in Lagos. He should have given us bigger, better airport,  should have given us electricity 24 hours non-stop with cheap tariff, like it is being done in Germany, where they beg their people to use energy at cheap price. He should have given us ultra modern and fast railway transportation, mechanised farming everywhere with good access roads for the farmers. He should have built biggest ranches for the herdsmen long before now, with railway transportation connected to the ranches for ease of bringing the cows down to the city etc. Obasanjo should retire from directing the affairs of our land

 Obasanjo has denied that he wanted a third term…

It’s a lie, he wanted a third term. Everyone knows that he wanted a third term but God aborted it. Let me illustrate my point using Oshodi, in Lagos, as an example. Oshodi used to be a den of robbers, but when former Governor Babatunde Fashola came, he cleared the place; now, Governor Akinwunmi Ambode is improving on what Fashola did and is upgrading that place. If Obasanjo had given us good infrastructure, like roads, 24-hour power supply, railway and other infrastructure during his eight-year tenure, Buhari would not be having these problems. It would then have been easier for Buhari to improve upon what Obasanjo did if he had left a powerful structure on ground. He has been all over the world and seen the best places. He had the opportunity to make Nigeria an industrial nation, but he didn’t do that; so he does not have the moral right to start forming any coalition.  Forming a coalition is hypocritical.

 You have been at loggerheads with your son’s wife over his alleged sudden disappearance and he purportedly wrote a letter recently asking that he be left alone and accusing you of embarrassing him.  What do you have to say?

My son cannot write that sort of letter and for anyone to say that the letter is from him is a big lie. One of the ways I can confirm that my son did not write that letter is because he does not and has never addressed me as Taiwo Martins at all. He always calls me Mrs. Obasanjo, even though I remind him that I am no longer married to his father, but he still insists on calling me that. So, it is obvious that it was someone that wrote the letter and not him.

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
When the roll call for President Muhammadu Buhari’s third Council of State meeting was taken at the Council Chambers of the Presidential Villa, yesterday, former Presidents Goodluck Jonathan, Shehu Shagari and former military President, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida were absent.

Former Head of the Interim National Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan was also marked absent.

Three former Heads of State, Generals Yakubu Gowon, Olusegun Obasanjo and Abdulsalami Abubakar, however, attended the meeting.

Also, former Chief Justices of Nigeria in attendance were Mohammed Uwais, Idris Kutigi, Alfa Belgore and Aloma Mukhtar.

The opening prayers were said by Gowon and Uwais.

The meeting focused on insecurity in the country as well as the 2019 general elections.

Officials from the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) reportedly briefed the council on preparations for next year’s elections.

Obasanjo, who was five minutes late, rushed into the chamber when a minute silence was being observed in honour of former CJN, Justice Dahiru Mustapha.

Thereafter, the former president went straight to shake hands with Buhari, Senate President, Bukola Saraki and Abubakar, before taking his seat.

The meeting, which began at 11:05am, was also attended by Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, Attorney General of the Federation and Justice Minister, Abubakar Malami.

Before the meeting commenced, Buhari went round the Council Chambers and shook hands with his visitors.

Governors in attendance were those of Sokoto, Delta, Adamawa, Imo, Benue, Lagos, Nasarawa, Abia, Bauchi, Jigawa, Kebbi, Plateau, Kano, Wike, Akwa Ibom, Edo, Ekiti, Kogi, Zamfara,  Osun, Ogun, Niger and Ebonyi.

The deputy governors of Bayelsa and Enugu were also in attendance.

Buhari shook the hand of his fiercest critic, Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State.

The first meeting under this administration held in  October 21, 2015 while the second held in September 2016.

The Council of State is an organ of the Federal Government saddled with the responsibility of advising the executive on policy making.

The council, which comprises the president as chairman and vice president as deputy chairman, has as members all former presidents and heads of state, all former CJN, Senate president, speaker of the House of Representatives, all state governors and the Attorney General of the Federation.

The council’s duties include advising the president in the exercise of his powers, with respect to the nation’s population census and compilation, publication and keeping of records and other information concerning same, prerogative of mercy, award of national honours, INEC (including the appointment of members of that commission), the National Judicial Council (including the appointment of members other than ex-officio members of that council); the National Population Commission (including the appointment of members of that commission).

The council also advises the president, whenever requested to do so, on the maintenance of public order and on such other matters as he may direct. 

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
Nkechi Chima Onyele, Abuja Pope Obumneme Odonwodo, popularly known as Junior Pope, is one of the regular faces in the wave making NTA sitcom, Professor Johnbull, where he plays the professor's son. Tall, intelligent and good-looking, the father of two made his debut in Secret Adventure, a movie directed byTchidi Chikere in 2007. The University... 

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The stage is set for the premiere of Agatha Amata's latest movie entitled, Disguise, which holds Sunday February 25, after which it will hit the cinemas on Friday March 3, 2018. Speaking at a private screening held in Lagos last week, Amata revealed that like her previous movies, she got the inspiration for the flick... 

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
Chukwudi Nweje, with agency report Immediate past chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission 

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Fri, 23 Feb 2018
Italy-based Nigerian Afro hip hop act, Fresh Green, has dropped a hot new single, entitled Asiri (Gossip), featuring Wizboy. Currently on massive rotation, Asiri is a love song, which tells a girl to forget about the gossip and concentrate on developing their love, because he is in love with her, and that is all that... 

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
Ten people have died and 10 others were seriously injured in a road accident which occurred around 11:30am 

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
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LEADING Sports Merchandise giant in Africa, AFA Sports, has released a new team jersey for the senior 

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I'm studying the letter, will respond appropriately 'National chair National Leader of the All 

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Fri, 23 Feb 2018
As Kano AG resigns Uche Usim, Abuja and Desmond Mgboh, Kano The Federal Account Allocation Committee 

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
Residents condemn govt action The three senators from Yobe, Senate Leader, Ahmad Lawan, Bukar Abba 

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From JOEAPU,BAMAKO TWO-time coach of theUganda's Silver Bucks, Mandy Juruni says he has nothing to 

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$100bn needed to fix oil sector says Kachikwu Uche Usim, Abuja Vice President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo 

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Brown chimezie Alhaji Moshood Mustapha is the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) chairman in Lagos State. 

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
We cannot continue this way, all in the name of democratic governance. For once, President Muhammadu 

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
Magnus Eze, Abuja The leadership of National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), South East zone, 

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
Lagos State Government yesterday urged hoteliers and event centres' owners to embrace the new tax payment system. The government made the call during the launch of a new regulation for the fiscalisation of the Hotel Occupancy and Restaurant Consumption Tax Law, and charged stakeholders in the hospitality industry to embrace the initiative designed to put... 

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
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Gov flags off Akpugo road construction Former Inspector General of Police, Mr. Ogbonnaya Onovo, has 

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Maduka Nweke The Private Sector Participants (PSP) operators in waste management have been warned not 

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
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Our spokesman'll respond to claims 'Group's member Chuks Onuoha, Umuahia A new factional leader 

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Let me say from the onset that this series on the mind will be based on biblical resources on the subject; 

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Saudi Arabia announced plans yesterday to spend $64 billions on building new venues and flying in Western acts, in a total overhaul of its entertainment sector that would have been unthinkable not long ago. Long known for its ultra-conservative mores, the kingdom has embarked on a wide-ranging programme of social and economic reforms driven by... 

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The controversial reinstatement of the suspended Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance 

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
Godwin Tsa, Abuja The Federal High Court, Abuja, yesterday, fixed May 9, 2018 to deliver judgment in 

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In his sermon at the mass of the plenary of the first 2018 Conference of Catholic Bishops of Nigeria 

Fri, 23 Feb 2018
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