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El-Rufai Advocates Drastic Measures To Tackle Rape

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Gov. Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State has said that drastic action was needed to tackle rape, including vigorous law enforcement to prosecute rapists in the country.

El-Rufai made this known at a virtual meeting organised by the Movement Against Rape and Sexual Violence (MARS-V).

The governor said that the state had provided a law that provided life imprisonment for anyone convicted of the rape of a minor and 21 years for rape of an adult.

El-Rufai said it was important for parents to teach their male children, the importance of respecting women from childhood.

The governor noted that the fear of stigmatisation, breakdown of the judicial system and lack of detailed investigation were some of the factors hindering the prosecution of cases of rape and gender based violence.

He called for the training of victims and law enforcement officers on the preservation of evidence for successful prosecution of rape cases.

According to him, there was also a seeming conspiracy of silence by traditional and religious leaders, “where society as a whole insists on covering up cases of rape.”

“One of the primary challenges faced in the fight against gender based violence is the breakdown in the judicial process, which results in delay in justice being served and it could also be as a result of corruption, personal beliefs and laxity of some judges,” he added.

“Most of those charged with the investigation of Gender-Based-Violence (GBV) are not well trained, and can be easily compromised through corruption,’’ but incompetence was however, the primary problem.’’

The governor advised that ‘’victims should also be sensitised on the importance of keeping evidence, to ensure that perpetrators of such heinous acts are brought to justice.’’

According to him, though rape is a criminal offence that needs to be proven beyond reasonable doubt, there is often “no preservation of evidence after rape, either by the victims or by officials put in charge of investigating such cases.’’

El-Rufai said that Kaduna State has put measures in place to fight against rape and GBV, having domesticated the Child Rights Act in February 2018.

‘’Under the state’s Child Welfare and Protection Law, girls are not allowed to get married until they complete their secondary school education, which in essence means marriages can’t happen until the age of 18,‘’ he disclosed.

El-Rufai said that the state had also passed the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, which will help to speed up the trial of criminal matters, adding that it also established four sexual assault referral centres for medical and psychological counselling.

The wife of the governor, Hajiya Ummi El-Rufai, who was one of the panellists, called for ‘’ harsher and more extreme laws against rape.”

Ummi argued that the present laws are not even being implemented and that there was a need for more stringent ones to serve as deterrent to would-be rapists.

While noting that rapists are becoming more violent and brazen by the day, she asked “why don’t we have laws that are addressing these gender based violence issues?”

The wife of the governor emphasised the need for parents to always speak up when their children are raped and not cover up the problem.

She called for a joint effort between government agencies and Non Governmental Organisations to speak out with one strong voice in condemning rape and other GBV.

In her remarks, Minister of Women Affairs, Pauline Tallen, explained that the rape epidemic has existed for a long time in Nigeria, adding that women and girls have always been disproportionally affected by GBV.

The minister who said that for every one rape case that is reported, about 10 other cases go unreported, underscored the need to eliminate vices that violated the fundamental rights of women and girls.

Tallen also stressed the importance of credible and verifiable database to aid the more efficient ways of carrying out decisions on GBV.

She also called for collaboration between governmental agencies such as NAPTIP and NGOs in tacking rape cases and other GBV.

The minister who campaigned for girl-child education, also advocated for the provision of one million sanitary pads for them, including more shelters for gender based violence victims.

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Agric Minister Shield’s Factional AFAN Leader From Police Invitation

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The minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Alhaji Sabo Nanono, on Friday, 17th June, 2021 at the ICC (International Conference Centre), in Abuja prevented policemen on duty from taking factional leader of the All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) Mr Farouk Rabiu for questioning on fraud related matters.


According to reliable sources and eye witnesses at the scene which was the venue of the 2021, Council on Agriculture, the police were there to invite Farouk to Force headquarters following a petition against him for acts that bordered on criminality.


Recently a federal high court sitting in Abuja had cautioned the renegade group led by Farouk through their lawyer, on Wednesday,15/2/2021, against parading themselves as leaders of AFAN until the matter is determined in court.


Farouk had been accused of defrauding investors using the name of AFAN Kano branch which he illegally registered, a matter which had been brought before the Corporate Affairs Commission, who revoked the registration.


However, Farouk has been continuously recognised as the leader of AFAN, by the Minister who hails from the same state with him despite several petitions from the Arc Kabir Ibrahim led executive.


The minister’s actions in siding with Farouk despite a case in court to resolve the leadership tussle of AFAN, has been allegedly linked to the minister’s shameful removal as chairman of AFAN Kano, long before he became appointed minister.


Witnesses at the scene stated that the minister after frantic efforts to get the Inspector General on phone to call off his men failed, resorted to giving an unhindered exit to Farouk in his official car, tantamount to obstruction of justice, much to the chagrin of the police officers.


A reliable source further disclosed that the policemen declined to follow the minister to his office.

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Three Soldiers Injured as Troops Kill ISWAP Terrorists in Borno

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Troops of the Nigerian Army under the Operation Hadin Kai have killed several ISWAP Terrorists in Dikwa town, Borno State.

According to a statement issued on Wednesday by the Director Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Mohammed Yerima, the gallant troops decisively dealt with the terrorists who were attempting to infiltrate the town on Tuesday.

The terrorist elements were said to have mounted five gun trucks, others mounted motorcycles, while others moved by foot.

They were, however, met with superior fire power by troops in conjunction with air bombardment by Air Task Force.

“The marauding terrorists were thoroughly vanquished forcing them to withdraw in high state of confusion abandoning their truck, guns and ammunition,” the statement read.

“During the encounter, six members of the terrorists groups were neutralized, several others were severely injured while the survivors withdrew in total disarray leaving behind their deceased colleagues”.

Three soldiers, however, sustained various degrees of injuries but have now been stabilised.

Items recovered during the encounter included one gun truck, eight AK 47 rifles, 40 rounds of 7.62mm Special, 39 special ammo, three motorcycles and six magazines.

To mop up the area, troops conducted exploitation in the early hours of Wednesday in conjunction with the Civilian Joint Task Force and hunters along the terrorists’ withdrawal routes and recovered 90 rounds of 7.62 mm x 54 on links belonging to the fleeing terrorists.

Meanwhile, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Major General Faruk Yahaya, has commended the gallant troops over the feat and charged them to remain resolute and steadfast.

He urged them to maintain the tempo in order to ensure total obliteration of terrorist groups within the North East region.

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Onion Marketers Threaten to Stop Supply to Southern Nigeria

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The Onion Producers and Marketers Association of Nigeria has threatened to stop the supply of onions down to the South from June 7, 2021.

The group said it would carry out the threat if the government fails to compensate its members who have suffered losses in recent times following attacks in some parts of the country.

President of the association, Aliyu Umar, made this known to journalists at a press briefing on Sunday in Sokoto State.

He explained that the government under a committee led by the Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello had promised to compensate their members, many of whom suffered huge losses in Abia, Imo and Oyo States during the #EndSARS and Shasha market crisis.

However, according to him, the promise has not been kept and the members have reportedly lost over 4 billion naira.

“We are calling on the state and Federal Government to restore law and order in the state, and we are calling on the good people of the southern part of Nigeria to live with the Hausa community in peace as we are only there for our lawful businesses,” Umar said.

“We also call on state governments to collaborate with fed govt to set up a committee to investigate the incident that led to the loss of lives and property of the Onion Association members.

“Furthermore, if the government fails to adhere to what we are saying, we are shutting the supply of onion to the entire south by Monday the 7th of June 2021”.

In recent times, the price of Onions skyrocketed from just about ₦20,000 to nearly a hundred thousand, in less than a year – a situation which quickly gave it the reputation of ‘new gold’.

While the price hike could not be understood by many, some traders have attributed the increment to seasonal fluctuations, a general increase in prices of fertilizers among other items, strike actions as well as insecurity arising from the #EndSARS protests.

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