NIGERIA NEWSPAPERS: TODAY'S THE PUNCH NEWSPAPER HEADLINES [24 MARCH, 2018].


Below are the headlines found on The Punch Online Newspaper for today, Saturday, 24 March, 2018.


Sat, 24 Mar 2018
The Christian Association of Nigeria, the #BringBackOurGirls coalition and the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar lll-led Jama’atu Nasril Islam, have disagreed over the amnesty promised to repentant Boko Haram insurgents by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The President on Friday promised to grant amnesty to members of the Boko Haram sect who are ready to drop their arms and embrace peace.


 
Buhari made the promise at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, while receiving girls who were abducted from their school in Dapchi, Yobe State last month and were released on Wednesday.

He said, “While further efforts are being made to secure the release of every abducted citizen in Nigeria, the government is ever ready to accept the unconditional laying down of arms by any member of the Boko Haram group, who show strong commitment in that regard.

“We are ready to rehabilitate and integrate such repentant members into the larger society.

“This country has suffered enough of hostility. Government is, therefore, appealing to all to embrace peace for the overall development of our people and the country.”

It is a welcome development –JNI

But while the JNI said the amnesty promised to repentant Boko Haram insurgents was a welcome development to the peace efforts of the government, CAN opposed the move.

The Secretary-General of the JNI, Dr. Abubakar Khalid-Aliyu, told one of our correspondents that it was a good development as long as it would guarantee peace in the country.

He, however, noted that the amnesty should only be granted to “those that show remorse,” adding that those granted amnesty should be monitored before being reintegrated into the society.


 
CAN, on the other hand, frowned on the move, describing it as a sign of “weakness on the part of the government.”

The media aide to the CAN President, Pastor Bayo Oladeji, in an interview with Saturday PUNCH, said, “Why grant amnesty to criminals who have killed many people? It shows weakness on the part of the government or sympathy for them as being speculated.

“In what way are they different from armed robbers, kidnappers, ritual killers, and corrupt people that are facing prosecution?

“What kind of government are they running? Where on earth are we having all kinds of messy events being orchestrated by the government? May God deliver Nigeria!”

The # BBOG said some insurgents that were freed in the past later backtracked and unleashed terror on the people.

The group questioned the rationale behind the move, noting that the government had not presented any strategy for preventing freed terror suspects from going back to terrorism.


Sat, 24 Mar 2018
The immediate past General Evangelist of the Christ Apostolic Church worldwide, Prophet Samuel Abiara, has taken a new wife.

At a brief but colourful ceremony in Ibadan, capital of Oyo State, on Thursday, the 75-year-old walked his new bride, Grace Ojewande, down the aisle, one and half years after he lost his spouse, Christianah, of over 50 years.


 
The wedding, which took place at the Christ Apostolic Church, Agbala Itura, saw top dignitaries including respected Christian leaders in attendance.

The new wife, who could not hide her joy at the occasion, is said to be in her early 50s and a native of Ifetedo in Osun State.

According to findings by Saturday PUNCH, Ojewande, a Level 16 officer at the Lagos State Ministry of Education, worships at the Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries.

Sources close to the family told our correspondent that the new bride had never been married or bore any child before exchanging marital vows with the clergy.

Giving reasons why he decided to remarry at 75, Prophet Abiara had said that he consulted widely before arriving at his choice.

He said, “My children, who are now grown-ups, held a meeting and concluded that I should get a new wife who will attend to my everyday needs at old age.

“After due consideration and having satisfied my conscience that my children’s suggestion was in conformity with the scriptures, I made up my mind to marry a new wife.

“The Bible established it that when a man loses his wife, he has the right to remarry. I am acting based on the directive of God and the advice of my children.”


Sat, 24 Mar 2018
The Independent National Electoral Commission has released the timetable and schedule of activities for the recall of the senator representing Kogi West Senatorial District, Dino Melaye, with the process set to start on Tuesday, March 27, 2018.

A statement released by INEC on Friday, which was signed by its Secretary, Mrs. Augusta Ogakwu, contained the timetable and schedule of activities for the recall process. The schedule of activities is expected to commence with the posting of the notice of verification at the commission’s office in Lokoja, Kogi State and end with the declaration of the outcome of the verification on April 29, 2018.


 
INEC said it had proceeded with the move pursuant to a judgment by the Court of Appeal, Abuja, delivered on March 16, 2018.

The statement said, “Pursuant to the judgment of the Court of Appeal, Abuja Division, delivered on March 16, 2018, the Independent National Electoral Commission hereby issues this timetable and schedule of activities for the recall of the senator representing Kogi West Senatorial District, Kogi State.

“The process will begin on March 27, 2018, with the posting of the notice of verification at the commission’s local government area office in Lokoja, Kogi State and end with the declaration of the outcome of the verification on April 29, 2018.”

The commission stressed that it was exercising its powers as conferred on it by “Sections 69 and 110 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), Section 116 of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) and of all other powers enabling it in that behalf.”

Also, according to the statement, April 4 is set as the last day for submission of application by interested observers, while April 20 is set as the last day for the submission of the names of verification agents for the member sought to be recalled and the petitioners.


Sat, 24 Mar 2018
About four years after Iyabo Obasanjo wrote an open letter to his father, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, the former President has described his daughter as a tough woman who will not put up with any nonsense from anyone.

Obasanjo said this at the Eko Hotel and Suites, Lagos, on Thursday while addressing women at the 14th annual lecture of the Women in Management, Business and Public Service, where he urged women to play more active roles in politics.


 
Blaming the minor role being played by women in Nigerian politics on men, the former President said, “It is out of the selfishness of our men; they will look for anything to keep women under and look at the sort of things that we do.

“I had two girls before I had a boy. I had thought that I would never have a boy before I had a boy. But it doesn’t matter who you are in our own family…. My first child, my daughter (Iyabo) will not take nonsense from you. And you try it; you would be put in your place. It doesn’t matter; you may be 10 times her height, she will bring you down. (It is) because I give them the encouragement and you heard, eight of my children have PhDs. I have slightly more boys than girls but I have more girls with PhD than boys.”

Even though, Obasanjo, at the event, praised women and described them as equal to men, ironically, Iyabo, a former senator, accused her father of being fond of maltreating women in a December 2013 open letter.

She had said, “Getting back to my mother, I still remember your beating her up continually when we were kids. How can kids forget that kind of violence against their mother?  Your maltreatment of women is legendary.

“Many of your women have come out to denounce you in public but since your madness is also part of the madness of the society, it is the women that are usually ignored and mistreated. Of course, you are the great pretender, making people believe you have a good family life and a good relationship with your children but once in a while your pretence gets cracked.”

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Jesusegun Alagbe with agency reports A former Minister of Water and Energy in Cameroon, Mr. Atangana Kouna, was on Thursday arrested in Nigeria and flown back home. According to police and local sources, Kouna was arrested amidst a crackdown on high-level corruption in the French African country, Reuters reported on Friday. There were speculations that [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Eric Dumo A civil society group, Activists United against Graft and Anti-Peoples Policies, have slammed President Muhammadu Buhari for his administrations handling of the kidnap and return of 105 female pupils of Government Girls Technical College, Dapchi, Yobe State, by Boko Haram. Describing the development as a poorly scripted drama by the All Progressives Congress-led [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Kamarudeen Ogundele, Ado Ekiti The Alaye of Oke Ayedun Ekiti in Ikole Local Government Area of Ekiti State, Oba Jacob Ala, Okunoye II, has passed away. He died in the early hours of Friday. A source in the town said the announcement of the death of the monarch was delayed because of tradition. Ayedun Ekiti [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Jesusegun Alagbe The General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (Worldwide), Pastor Enoch Adeboye, has prayed for the release of Leah Sharibu, the Dapchi Christian girl, who is still in the captivity of Boko Haram. Sharibu was captured alongside 109 schoolgirls of the Government Girls Technical College, Dapchi, Yobe State on February 19, [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Eric Dumo A governorship aspirant on the platform of the All Progressives Congress in Ekiti State, Mr. Opeyemi Bamidele, has warned the partys leadership in the state against zoning the ticket to any particular section as, according to him, this could spell doom for the party. Making the call on Wednesday at a forum organised [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Tunde Ajaja The convener of the Not Too Young To Run initiative in Surulere Federal Constituency I in Lagos State, Mr. Ifeoluwa Chris, has called on youths to participate in politics instead of lamenting and blaming the older politicians. Speaking at the first general assembly of the group, themed, The youth and their significance to [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Ade Adesomoju, Abuja The Federal High Court in Abuja on Friday dismissed all the 13 counts of money laundering and passport fraud instituted by the Federal Government against a serving Justice of the Supreme Court, Justice Sylvester Ngwuta. Ngwuta was among the judicial officers whose houses were raided by the operatives of the Department of [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
John Alechenu, Abuja The report of the Kaduna State Governor Nasir el-Rufai-led All Progressives Congress Committee on True Federalism is one of the main items on the agenda of the National Executive Committee of the APC scheduled to meet next Tuesday. The National Publicity Secretary of the APC, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, confirmed this in a [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Armstrong Bakam, Bauchi The Bauchi State government has said that 14 people have been killed following the outbreak of Lassa fever and cholera in the state. The states Commissioner for Health, Dr. Zuwaira Hassan, disclosed this at a media briefing in Bauchi on Friday. Hassan said nine people died of cholera while five died of [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Friday Olokor, Jos At least three persons, including two brothers of the same parents, have been confirmed dead following a fresh attack by suspected Fulani herdsmen on Dong District in Jos North Local Government Area of Plateau State. Sources in the community gave the identities of the victims as including Bere Dor (25) and Gaire [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
The Nigeria Union of Teachers has called on the Federal Government to provide adequate security for boarding schools, especially those in the North-East or run them as day schools. Secretary-General of the union, Dr. Mike Ike-Ene, made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Friday in Abuja, while reacting to [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Friday Olokor, Jos A former Governor of Plateau State, Jonah Jang, said he would appear before the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission if properly invited for questioning because he was not on the run. He also said contrary to reports published by some media organisations, he had not been invited by the [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Justin Tyopuusu, Jalingo The Taraba State government on Friday said a shortfall in revenue allocation and the need to pay salaries as and when due were the reasons why the state government had not paid retirees gratuities running into N11bn. The states Head of Civil Service, Mr. Simon Angyo, said this at the states accountability [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Umar Muhammed, Lafia The Peoples Democratic Party in Nasarawa State said it had dissociated itself from the forthcoming local government election in the state, alleging that the All Progressives Congress had already perfected its plan to rig the poll. The chairman of the PDP in the state, Mr. Francis Orogu, disclosed this in an interview [] 


Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Olaleye Aluko, Abuja The Federal Government through the Federal Character Commission is investigating cases of lopsided appointments made by ministries, departments and agencies which did not follow the federal character principle. The Executive Chairman of the commission, Dr Shettima Abba, stated this in Abuja at a National Stakeholders Seminar, noting that Nigerians, who felt they [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Simon Utebor, Yenagoa A top member of the All Progressives Congress in Bayelsa State, Chief Perekeme Kpodo, has said that the party will not succeed in the forthcoming general elections if the reconciliation by the national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, fails. Kpodo, a former Interim Chairman of the APC, therefore, urged all [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Oladimeji Ramon The Federal High Court in Lagos has restrained the Lagos State Government from enforcing the provisions of its new Hotel Occupancy and Restaurant (Fiscalisation) Regulations 2017. The law introduced a five per cent consumption tax in addition to a five per cent Value Added Tax on every purchase or service rendered by hotels, [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Jesusegun Alagbe with agency reports The National Emergency Management Agency says it has received 149 Nigerians who voluntarily returned from Libya. The returnees were said to have arrived at the Cargo Wing of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos at 10.45 pm on Thursday aboard a chartered flight operated by Buraq Airlines with registration number [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
John Alechenu and Olusola Fabiyi The All Progressives Congress has said it has not seen any reason to fret over unsubstantiated claims by the opposition that there is a growing coalition against the ruling party ahead of the 2019 election. The party said its major preoccupation now was to build and strengthen itself ahead of [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Ade Adesomoju and Peter Dada The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed an appeal filed by the Ondo State Governor, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu, against the suit of one of his opponents in the last governorship primaries of the All Progressives Congress in the state, Mr. Olusegun Abraham. Akeredolus appeal is in connection with the service on [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Oladimeji Ramon A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party in Oyo State, Chief Olanrewaju Otiti, who is being prosecuted for an alleged fraud of N650m, has urged the court to release her passport to enable her to travel to the United States of America. Otiti, through her lawyer, Akinola Oladeji, told the court on Friday [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Olalekan Adetayo and Alexander Okere President Muhammadu Buhari and Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, on Friday offered condolences to the Abebe family over the death of Dr. Christopher Abebe, who died on Thursday night at the age of 99. The deceased was the father of former President Olusegun Obasanjos late wife, Stella. A statement by [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Olusola Fabiyi and Ifeanyi Onuba The Federal Government on Friday said that contrary to the assertion by the Co-Chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation that the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan did not address the economic needs of the country, government spending on human capital development was prioritised in the plan. Gates had [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Femi Makinde, Osogbo Five students of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife have been remanded in prison custody for the alleged assault of a warden and university security men who went to forcefully eject the students from the Moremi Hall to give way for renovation works in the rooms. Our correspondent gathered on Friday that [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Some governors have indicated interest in the 2019 senatorial election after their tenure. Currently, there are 15 ex-governors in the Senate, and political pundits are of the opinion that some of the governors only go to the upper legislative chamber to 'rest,' describing it as a situation which has gross implications for the future of [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Peter Dada, Akure The management and students of Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba Akoko, Ondo State, have yet to agree on how much the new tuition fee of the institution will be. The students had on Monday protested the alleged plan of the state government to increase the tuition fee of the university from N30, 000 [] 


Sat, 24 Mar 2018
By-elections will hold in Ward 'B', Ogunoloko and Ward 'B', Dopemu in Oshodi-Isolo and Agege local government areas of Lagos State respectively on Saturday, March 24, 2018. The election is sequel to death of the former occupants of the councillorship seats in the two council areas. To this effect,Mr. Hakeem Sokunle, representing Oshodi-Isolo Constituency I [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
John Alechenu and Olusola Fabiyi The All Progressives Congress said the revelation about operations of the data analysis firm, Cambridge Analytica, especially the role it played in the lead up to Nigerias 2015 elections, confirmed what it had suspected about the then-ruling Peoples Democratic Party. The National Publicity Secretary of the APC, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
At a University of Miami rally to combat sexual assault on Thursday, ex-Vice President Joe Biden had made an undisguised reference to President Donald Trumps alleged irreverent attitude to women. Biden, who was ex-President Barack Obamas deputy had noted, 'A guy who ended up becoming our national leader said, 'I can grab a woman anywhere [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Ifeanyi Onuba, Abuja The National Bureau of Statistics on Friday released the Internally Generated Revenue report for 2017, stating that states generated a total amount of N931.23bn during the fiscal period. The NBS in the report said the N931.23bn was an increase of N100bn over the N831.19 recorded in 2016. The NBS report said that [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Ifeanyi Onuba, Abuja Since the introduction of the Treasury Single Account in September 2015, a total inflow of N8.9tn from Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government has been recorded by the Federal Government. The Accountant-General of the Federation, Alhaji Ahmed Idris, gave the figure in Abuja on Friday at a workshop for finance journalists held [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Peter Dada, Akure The Association of Professional Bodies of Nigeria has urged the Ministry of Solid Minerals Development to make the Ajaokuta Steel Company in Kogi State to be in good working condition before it will give it out as concession to the private investors. The association also commended the House of Representatives over the [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Femi Asu The import of Nigerian crude oil by the United States rose by 48 per cent to 112.92 million barrels last year, the highest annual level in five years. The latest data from the US Energy Information Administration seen by our correspondent on Friday showed that the country imported 75.81 million barrels of Nigerian [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Oyetunji Abioye The Central Bank of Nigeria on Friday sustained its intervention in the foreign exchange market by injecting the sum of $339.89m into the Retail Secondary Market Intervention Sales. The Acting Director, Corporate Communications, CBN, Mr. Isaac Okorafor, noted that the continued intervention was in line with the pledge made by the Governor, Godwin [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Ozioma Ubabukoh MyPadi.ng, a real estate start-up providing off-campus accommodation for higher institution students, has raised seed funding from EchoVC to provide more off-campus accommodation for Nigerian students. Our correspondent gathered that this round of funding would be used to accelerate myPadi's expansion into more cities, 'serving more schools, growing the team and improving their [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Samuel Awoyinfa, Abeokuta The Ogun State Police command has arrested a 36-year-old man, Owolabi Musiliu, over the alleged mysterious death of his lover, Fausat Idowu,. The suspect, who is a mechanic at the Mechanic Village in the Camp Area of Abeokuta, was alleged to have taken 40-year-old Fausat, a divorcee and mother of four, to [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Samuel Awoyinfa, Abeokuta The Ogun State Area Command, Nigeria Customs Service, says it has intercepted 20 smuggled used vehicles, popularly known as tokunbo, and 1,060 bags of foreign rice among other items, around the Idiroko border axis in two weeks. The state controller, Sani Madugu, disclosed this to journalists on Friday at the Idiroko border [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Adelani Adepegba, Abuja The Police Service Commission has dismissed an Assistant Superintendent of Police, for serious misconduct. The commission also approved the compulsory retirement of another ASP, while it vacated the pending disciplinary matter against DCP Godwin Nwobodo and promoted him to the rank of Commissioner of Police with effect from January 30, 2013. A [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Olaleye Aluko, Abuja A Federal High Court in Kano State has sentenced a 57-year-old man, Yusuf Umar, to 10 years imprisonment for keeping in his custody a 14-year-old girl and raping her. Our correspondent learnt that Umar, who hails from Nasarawa Local Government Area of Kano State, had sexually exploited the teenager, who is also [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Olaleye Aluko, Abuja Operatives of the National Agency for Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, in collaboration with British and Spanish authorities, has rescued 39 Nigerian girls forced to work as sex slaves in some parts of Spain. Our correspondent learnt that the human trafficking syndicate was smashed by NAPTIP, National Crime Agency of the British [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Jesusegun Alagbe Maryam Alexander sat calmly with a bowed head, hugging her two-year-old son, David, to her chest. She paused and shed tears intermittently as she told the story of pain she had been going through since her son was diagnosed with retinoblastoma in August 2017. According to the American Cancer Society, retinoblastoma (or simply [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Success Nwogu, Ilorin Newspaper vendors and residents of Kaiama, Baruteen in Kwara State and Igboho in Oyo State as well as other adjoining communities have raised the alarm over alleged incessant attacks by suspected kidnappers, armed robbers and herdsmen. A former Chairman, Newspaper Distributors Association of Nigeria, Kwara State chapter, Mr. Fatunmbi Olusegun, told our [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Tunde Ajaja The police in Ondo State on Friday arraigned a 45-year-old man, Bolaji Ajasa, before a magistrates court in Okitipupa for attempting to touch the breast of a hawker, Ajoke Ibisanmi. Ajasa, who has no fixed address, is also standing trial on a charge of unlawful assault before Magistrate Banji Ayeomoni. The News Agency [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Spanish police have rescued 39 girls from a notorious Nigerian organised crime ring who kept them in a cave-like house and forced them into prostitution in Spain. According to reports, they were freed in a joint operation involving the UKs National Crime Agency and Nigerias National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons. TheUKs [] 

Sat, 24 Mar 2018
Ademola Olonilua (aolonilua@punchng.com) Fast rising Nigerian music act, Danjay Seduction, has just released a banging new tune entitled Gogo. The new song was produced by prolific hit maker, Emperaw Beats and was mixed and mastered by Anddy Kin. Born Danjuma Aigbogun in the late 90s, Danjay Seduction is a talented Nigerian Afro dancehall singer and [] 
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