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JUST IN: Almost 3 Years After Death, Former Senate President, Joseph Wayas’s Body Arrives Nigeria

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Exactly two years and nine months after his passing the remains of Late Senate President, Dr Joseph Wayas, has arrived Nigeria for onward burial.

Recall that Wayas, who held sway as Nigeria’s Senate President between October 1,1979 and December 31,1983, died in a London hospital on November 30,2021, at the age of 80.

The ex-Senate President’s wife died 12 days after. While his wife had since been buried, the revered politician’s remains had remained in a morgue in London,a development that had sparked controversies.

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Some persons who had concluded that the late octogenarian’s body had since been secretly interred in London, were surprised to see the remains back 33 months after.

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His body was received at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport,at 4:30am,Wednesday morning,by his family, friends and some prominent sons and daughters of Cross River North Senatorial District, among who were Senator Jarigbe Agom,Hon. Peter Akpanke , Johnny Agom, SAN, and Dr Dom Cklaimz Enamhe.

At the time of filing this report, the body which was driven straight from the airport to the National Hospital, Abuja, had been deposited at the hospital’s mogue.

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Speaking variously to newsmen, after the body was received, Senator Jarigbe Agom, representing Cross River North and Hon Peter Akpanke, representing Obudu, Bekwara Obanlikwu Federal Constituency, at the National Assembly, expressed happiness that the body had finally been brought home.

Also, his late wife’s family, though grieving, expressed relief at the development and appreciated all those who had facilitated the return of his remains.

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Recall that when the politician and his wife died, the then governor of Cross River State, Ben Ayade’s government immediately set up a committee headed by former Minister of Justice, Kanu Agabi, to oversee the burial activities.

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To facilitate the committee’s work, Ayade was said to have approved and immediately released N200 million to the committee with a promise to release another tranche of N50 million.

It was gathered that the committee released N100 million to a sub-committee vested with the task of repatriating the remains of Wayas and his wife and headed by the former Director General, Nigeria Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, Dave Ashang to liaise with the family to achieve the purpose.

However, all these efforts were fruitless, thus compelling some sons and daughters of Cross River North Senatorial district to set up a volunteer group under the aegis of “Who is Who in Northern Cross River” to take up the task of ensuring not only the return of his remains but also according it a befitting burial.

Wednesday’s arrival of the body was the handwork of the volunteer group which had coordinated donations from concerned indigenes of the zone.

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Three Nigerians sentenced To 235 Years In US Prison

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A court in Mississippi, United States of America has sentenced three Nigerians to 235 years in prison.

The jury found all the three personguilty of mail fraud, wire fraud, identity theft, credit card fraud and theft of government property.

Oladimeji Seun Ayelotan, 30, was sentenced to 95 years in prison, while Rasaq Aderoju Raheem, 31, got 115 years jail term.

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Also, Femi Alexander Mewase, 45, received 25 years in jail.

They were convicted for running online scams.

They were said to have duped people of tens of millions of dollars.

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Deadly Blaze Kills Even In France

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An apartment building blaze early Thursday killed seven people in the southern French city of Nice and police were investigating the fire as a possible arson, authorities said.

The dead include three children – 5, 7 and 10 years old – and a 17-year-old teenager who tried to escape by jumping from a window, they said.

The apartment was occupied by a family believed to have Comoran origins, the regional prefect Hugues Moutouh said, referring to the southern African island nature.

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Ten people were inside when the fire broke out.

Rescuers were alerted at around 2:30 am (0030 GMT) to the blaze on the seventh floor of the building in the low-income neighbourhood of Les Moulins, known for being a drug-dealing hub, in the west of the city.

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In spite of the substantial resources deployed, “unfortunately seven people died during this fire”, firefighters said.

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Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said on social media that the quick arrival of firefighters “probably prevented more deaths”.

Nice prosecutor Damien Martinelli said investigators were looking into a “criminal” cause for the fire.

“In light of the initial evidence, I have opened an investigation into acts of arson leading to death,” he told reporters at the scene.

The authorities said the blaze probably broke out on the building’s second floor and spread to higher floors.

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Rescuers said that three people were taken to hospital, one of them with life-threatening injuries.

They said firefighters were confronted by a “raging apartment fire” on the seventh floor of the building. They carried out three aerial ladder rescues and evacuated dozens.

In total, 25 fire engines and 72 firefighters tackled the fire.

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Twenty people were evacuated to a temporary shelter, with Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi saying a crisis unit to help anyone affected by the fire.

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Biden Speaks Of Quitting Presidential Race If…

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US President Joe Biden said he could drop his reelection bid if doctors found he had a medical condition, as a top Democrat on Wednesday urged the 81-year-old to step aside.

Biden’s comments were the first time he has even slightly opened the door to abandoning the White House race, and came as Representative Adam Schiff, a key ally from California, urged Biden to “pass the torch.”

“If I had some medical condition that emerged, if somebody, if the doctors came and said ‘you’ve got this problem, that problem,’” Biden told the Black media outlet BET in an interview taped Tuesday, when asked what could make him rethink.

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Biden however defended his decision to stay on for a rematch with Republican Donald Trump in November, and explained why he had not handed over to a younger generation after one term.

READ ALSO: Biden Falters In Fiery Debate With Trump

“I said I was going to be a transitional candidate, and I thought I’d be able to move on from this, pass it on to someone else,” he said. “But I didn’t anticipate things getting so, so, so divided.”

Biden has been fighting for political survival since a disastrous debate against Trump nearly three weeks ago, in which his tired and confused appearance sparked concerns about his age.

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Schiff became the first Democrat to call for him to step aside since the assassination attempt against Trump on Saturday, which had briefly silenced the growing chorus against Biden.

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A second Trump presidency will undermine the very foundation of our democracy, and I have serious concerns about whether the President can defeat Donald Trump in November,” Schiff said in a statement to the Los Angeles Times.

Schiff, who is expected to win a Senate seat this November, is a key White House ally in the legislature and shot to nationwide prominence as lead prosecutor during then-president Trump’s first impeachment trial.

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Biden was set to make a fresh attempt to prop up his candidacy in a speech to crucial Latino voters in the battleground state of Nevada later Wednesday.

– ‘Pretty damn good’ –

Around 20 House Democrats and one senator have now called on Biden to leave the White House race but Biden has refused, insisting he is best placed to beat Trump.

READ ALSO: Ex-Rep Rejects Membership Of Edo APC Gov Campaign Council

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Biden, Trump agree to election debates in June, September
Most polls show Biden trailing in a tight race, with Trump pulling ahead in key swing states but no dramatic movement since the debate debacle or shooting.

Biden said his mental acuity was “pretty damn good” in an NBC interview on Monday, one of a series of unscripted outings aimed at showing he has what it takes.

With pressure on Biden mounting, Democrats said on Wednesday they plan a virtual nomination for the president in the first week of August, ahead of the Democratic National Convention (DNC) on August 19.

Some Democrats have slammed the scheme, accusing the party of trying to ram through Biden’s candidacy and avoid a full discussion of alternative choices.

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Party chiefs say they need to carry out the virtual roll-call by August 7, which is the deadline set by the Republican-led state of Ohio for the submission of nominations.

Biden otherwise risks not being on the ballot in Ohio, the home state of Trump’s new running mate J.D. Vance.

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While Ohio’s governor has signed a law giving Biden more time, the DNC said it feared further legal challenges.

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“None of this will be rushed,” the heads of the DNC’s rules committee said in a letter to lawmakers obtained by AFP. “No matter what may be reported, our goal is not to fast-track.”

But several lawmakers are planning to sign a letter against the virtual nomination plan and others have criticized it, according to US media.

Biden insists that Democratic voters support him, but a poll by the Associated Press and NORC Center for Public Affairs Research said Wednesday that nearly two-thirds want him to step aside.

 

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