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Tension In Benin As Men Of Special Anti-Robbery Squad Takeover Assembly

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… It’s A False Alarm- OC House

Men of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad deployed from Abuja allegedly have chased away policemen guarding the Edo State House of Assembly Complex, currently undergoing renovation, in a bid to forcefully takeover the assembly and illegally inaugurate another House of Assembly.

The SARS officials believed to be acting on orders from Abuja are currently at the Assembly Complex, in the King’s Square area of Benin City, the Edo State capital.

A retired deputy Clerk (name withheld) has been allegedly hired to illegally inaugurate a parallel assembly that will take over the function of law making in the state.

READ ALSO: Imo Gov, APC Stakeholders Plotting To Take Over Edo Assembly, Speaker Raises Alarm

However, answering questions from the Speaker who later paid a visit to the Anthony Enahoro Complex which under renovation, officer in charge of the House, ASP Timi Peter said there was no such invasion.

She told Mr. Speaker that everything was calm and under control.

Recall that the Speaker of the Edo State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Frank Okiye, on Wednesday raised the alarm over a plot by the Governor of Imo State, Hope Uzodinma and stakeholders in the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Edo State, to import a fake mace to violently take over the Edo State House of Assembly.

Okiye, who spoke after plenary on Wednesday, in Benin City, said the plot is to be executed in cahoots with the impeached Deputy Speaker, Hon. Yekini Idiaye.

According to him, “The dubious plan by the Governor of Imo State, Sen. Hope Uzodinma and stakeholders of the APC in Edo State to import a fake mace to take over the Edo State House of Assembly working in cahoots with the Deputy Speaker, who recently declared support for the candidate of the APC to congregate in a secret location to illegally and violently take over control of the Assembly has been brought to our notice.”

READ ALSO: Restructure HYPREP For Speedy Ogoniland, Others Cleanup, Group Tells Buhari

Warning of the grave consequences such a move portends for democracy in Nigeria, Okiye called on the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari, and the Presidency to urgently call the Imo State Governor and others working with him to execute this illegal plan to desist from their plans and allow the laws of the state to guide them.

“The state’s polity is already heated by the high political tension from the electioneering campaigns. Their planned action is akin to lighting a match in an already tensed political environment, which conflagration is capable of causing crisis in the state, and of a scale beyond our imagination.”

He said, “We call on Edo people whose mandate and interests the state’s legislature holds and protects, to rise against this planned attack and plot to subvert their will and subjugate them using external forces.

“We urge lovers of democracy across the world, institutions that uphold democratic tenets and values, pro-democracy groups, to denounce this planned illegality that seeks to distract a duly constituted authority.”

“We recognise the constitutional right of the three members of the House of Assembly to support the candidate of their choice, but that should not distract them from coming to work to carry out the job they were elected for.

READ ALSO: BREAKING: Edo State Deputy Speaker impeached

“We are, as always, committed to the protection of the democratic rights of our people as the legislature remains a sacred institution in the democratisation process,” he added

Meanwhile at time of filing this report, governor of the State alongside top government functionaries were at the Assembly complex to assess situation of things.

Details later…

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Obaseki Warns Against Open Grazing, Solicits Stakeholders’ Support

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Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State has said the ban on open grazing in the state still remains, warning that anyone found wanting will be made to face the full wrath of the law.

The governor said this while addressing stakeholders during an interactive session on the Edo State Regional Development and Benin City Master Plan, held at Iguobazuwa, Ovia South-West Local Government Area of the State.

Obaseki who reassured the government’s commitment to the safety and security of residents, called for the collaboration and support of all stakeholders to ensure a peaceful, secure and prosperous Edo State.

He said, “Any herdsman in our bush without permission is working against the law of our State, and anything that happens, they can’t blame anyone.

READ ALSO: Edo Police Parade 21 Suspects Over Alleged Murder, Cultism, Pipeline Vandalism

“Let us be sure that nobody gives that person the permission to enter our forest and if permission will be granted, let us know the type of permission given to them to come into our bushes or forest to graze with their cattle.

“Open grazing is banned in Edo State. If they are in your forest, let us know where they are because we have police and vigilantes who will help us get them out through a number we will give you to call.”

Obaseki added, “Anybody that wants to do ranching business should contact you, the community people and you will decide on the land to use and method of feeding their cattle. They should do the business with you and not invade our forest indiscriminately as if there are no owners. The forest and bushes belong us.”

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Nigeria Air: EFCC Arrests Ex-Buhari’s Minister Over N8bn Fraud

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC has arrested Hadi Sirika, Minister of Aviation under former President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration over an ongoing N8 billion money laundering probe of Nigeria Air.

Vanguard gathered that Sirika arrived at the Federal Capital Territory Command of the EFCC at about 1:00 pm on Tuesday.

Sirika is currently being quizzed by the EFCC investigators over alleged fraudulent contracts awarded by him to a company known as Engirios Nigeria Limited, owned by his younger sibling, Abubakar Sirika.

READ ALSO: BREAKING: Dangote Further Crashes Diesel, Aviation Fuel  Price

Recall that, in February, EFCC investigated the activities of the Aviation Ministry under Sirika for conspiracy, abuse of office, diversion of public funds, and contract inflation.

Others are criminal breaches of trust and money laundering amounting to N8,069,176,864.00 during Sirika’s tenure in office.

Apart from being listed as the company’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Abubakar is said to be the sole signatory to the company’s two accounts, domiciled in Zenith and Union Banksy.

READ ALSO: BREAKING: EFCC Chair Vows To Follow Yahaya Bello’s Prosecution To Conclusion

It was gathered that the ex-minister’s younger brother, Abubakar Sirika, has been arrested and detained by the commission in connection with N3,212,258,930.18 paid to his company, Engirios Nigerian Limited’s, bank account by the former minister.

It was noted that there is no trace of work done on any of the contract items to date.

Sirika was arrested Sunday February 4 to assist the commission in its probe of the Aviation Ministry’s financial expenditures during his tenure.

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BREAKING: EFCC Freezes Over 300 Accounts Over Suspicious FX Flows

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The Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ola Olukoyede, says the anti-graft agency has discovered another worse scheme other than crypto trading platform Binance and its system.

He said the agency has frozen about 300 accounts to ensure the safety of the foreign exchange market.

READ ALSO: BREAKING: EFCC Chair Vows To Follow Yahaya Bello’s Prosecution To Conclusion

The scheme popularly called the “P to P” peer- peer financial trading scheme has operated outside the official banking and financial corridors and there was a looming disaster that could further crashed the Naira value that has continued to gain.

“There are people in this country doing worse than Binance,” he said, adding that over $15bn passed through one of the platforms in the last one year, outside the financial regulations.

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