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Suspension Of WAEC Puts Nigeria At More Risk, Says Atiku

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Former Vice President of Nigeria, Atiku Abubakar has reacted to the suspension of the 2020 West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) by the Federal Government.

Atiku’s reaction comes two days after the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu announced that no Unity Schools will participate in the scheduled WAEC exams.

Speaking after the Federal Executive Council meeting on Wednesday, the Minister asked the examination body and the state governments to reconsider their decision to open for exams.

In a statement he personally signed on Friday, Atiku said the cancellation will put the country at more risks.

He pointed out that 1.5 million Nigerian youths write the West African Senior School Certificate Examination annually, adding that the abrupt cancellation of “this examination is to set back our nation’s youth, and place them behind their contemporaries in other West African nations.”

“I urge this administration to take into account that the lives they are trying to save will be further put at risk, because if this policy is not reversed, tens of thousands, and possibly hundreds of thousands of Nigerians, will breach social distancing rules to cross over to neighbouring West African nations to write their WASSCE, rather than miss a year,” the statement partly read.

The former presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 general elections noted that the move by the Nigerian government to curb the COVID-19 pandemic is not in the nation’s best interest.

This, he noted, is because the Federal Government unilaterally took the decision “without consultation, and thoughtful action,” arguing that it “may be counterproductive.”

“This is perilous because Foreign Direct Investments and other economic indicators are tied to the educational indexes of nations.

“Already, Nigeria lags behind other African nations in crucial indices, like school enrolment, pass rates, and out of school children. This action will further create chaos in the public education system and exacerbate an already bad situation,” he said.

On the way forward, Atiku wants the Federal and state governments to mobilise all available public and private infrastructures including primary schools, stadia, and cinemas, for the examinations.

In doing this, he also called on the President Muhammadu Buhari administration to “prevail on WAEC to have a staggering examination with a different set of questions for each shift.”

In doing this, the PDP chieftain believes that the government’s directives on social distancing will be achieved while candidates sit for their examination, thus describing the move as “a win-win scenario.”

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Troops Neutralise Bandits, Rescue Kidnap Infant In Doka Village In Katsina State

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In its efforts towards ridding the North-West zone of banditry and other criminality, troops of Operation Sahel Sanity have neutralized bandits, rescued kidnapped infant in Doka village in Katsina State.

This was contained in a statement signed by the Acting Director, Defence Media Operations, Brigadier General Benard Onyeuko, issued to pressmen on Friday.

The Statement:

In continuation of their aggressive clearance operation against criminal elements across the North West zone, on 24 September 2020, based on credible Information on bandits attack in Unguwar Doka village of Faskari LGA of Katsina State, gallant troops of Opeartion SAHEL SANITY responded swiftly and immediately mobilized to the general area where they successfully cleared the village of the marauders to the admiration of the locals. During the encounter, troops successfully neutralized 21 bandits while others escaped with gunshot wounds into the forest as evident by the trails of blood along the criminals’ escape route.

In the aftermath of the decisive encounter, the gallant troops successfully rescued 3 kidnapped victims including an 8 months old baby who have been in the custody of the criminals for more than 23 days. During the exploitation phase of the operation, the gallant troops recovered one AK 47 rifle, one AK 47 magazine and 3 Motorcycles from the fleeing bandits.

Regrettably, resulting from the encounter with the bandits, one gallant officer and 2 soldiers paid the supreme sacrifice while 2 other soldiers were wounded in action and are currently receiving medical treatment in a military medical facility and responding positively. The fearless troops have continued to pursue the bandits into the forest and dominating the general areas with aggressive fighting patrols to deny them any respite.

Consequently, troops of Operation SAHEL SANITY are commended for their resilience and commitment to duty. They are further urged not to rest on their oars until the Northwest zone is completely rid of all criminal elements. The good people of the North-West zone are once again assured of troops’ commitment to the safety of lives and properties within the zone. They are also encouraged to continue to avail troops with timely and credible information that will assist in the conduct of operations to rout the criminal elements.

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Nigeria Records 111 New COVID-19 Cases

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Nigeria on Wednesday recorded 111 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total number of cases confirmed to 57,724.

In a late-night tweet, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) noted that the new cases were reported from 12 states of the federation, including Lagos where 31 cases were recorded.

Other states with new cases include Gombe (31), Kaduna (18), FCT (15), Rivers (14), Imo (3), Kwara (3), Oyo (3), Bayelsa (2), Edo (1), and Osun (1).

The NCDC report shows that 48,985 recovered patients have been discharged while 1,102 deaths have been recorded so far.

Profile photo, opens profile page on Twitter in a new tabNCDC@NCDCgov
111 new cases of #COVID19Nigeria; Lagos-31
Gombe-18
Kaduna-18
FCT-15
Rivers-14
Imo-3
Kwara-3
Oyo-3
Bayelsa-2
Ogun-2
Edo-1
Osun-1
57,724 confirmed
48,985 discharged
1,102 deaths

Over N10 billion worth of palliatives to be distributed

Wednesday’s NCDC report comes only a few hours after the Federal Government announced that it has commenced the distribution of palliatives worth N10.9 billion to households and Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises.

President Muhammadu Buhari disclosed the new move on Tuesday while delivering a speech via video-message, on the first day of the 75th session of the UN General Assembly Debate.

According to him, the disbursement of the sum is part of efforts to reduce the suffering of Nigerians imposed by the COVID-19.

“In order to mitigate its impact on Nigerians, our administration has commenced the disbursement of the sum of N10.9 Billion to households and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises as palliatives,” he said.

Speaking further, the president restated Nigeria’s commitment to working with other member states to promote the well-being of citizens.

“I should also state that Nigeria is committed to working with the other Member States in the spirit of global cooperation and solidarity to promote human health and general well-being.

“Nigeria will continue to partner with the WHO and some countries to ensure accelerated development and manufacturing, as well as the uninhibited supply of safe and effective Coronavirus vaccines to all,” he said.

In addition, President Buhari noted that the government has established a N500 billion fiscal stimulus package and sustained delivery of humanitarian and social interventions to poor and vulnerable households, while our Central Bank has launched a N3.5 trillion-stimulus package to boost manufacturing and facilitate import substitution

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Army Eliminate Top Boko Haram Commanders, Others

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The Defence Headquarters has said that Troops of Operation Lafiya Dole have eliminated top commanders and destroyed several terrorist camps at the Lake Chad Basin in recent encounters in the northeast.

The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche disclosed this on Thursday in a statement in Abuja.

He explained that In continuation of the aggressive clearance operation against terrorism and other sundry crimes in the North East, troops of Army Super Camp Malumfatori at the Lake Chad Basin conducted massive clearance operations.

According to Enenche, the successful operation led to the destruction of several identified terrorists’ camps and hideouts located at Tunbun Gini, Tunbun Nbororo, Tunbun Kayoma, Tunbun Kaza, Tunbun Fulani at the fringes of Lake Chad in Kukawa Local Government Area of Borno State.

“Several top BHT/ISWAP terrorists commanders were killed during the successful operation including Abu Usman, Alhaji Shettima, Modu Mainok, Bukar Gana, Abu Summayya, Amir Taam and Amir Kuraish among others”.

The Army General stresed that the Armed Forces of Nigeria are working together with other security agencies are highly committed to ending the insurgency and other security challenges in the country.

He said, “While the good people of the North East are once again assured of troop’s commitment to the safety of lives and property within the zone, they are also encouraged to continue to avail the troops with timely and credible information that will assist them in the conduct of their operations”.

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