Noble Reporters Media reports that the six children reportedly went in search of firewood in a bush located in Magami village in Maradun local government area of the state, died while playing with the device.
Farouq in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja signed by her Special Assistant on Media, Mrs Nneka Anibeze described the death of the children as heartbreaking.
She called on the concerned authorities to ensure that explosives do not get into the wrong hands.
Masari denied the claim by Boko Haram that it was behind the abduction, insisting local bandits roaming Katsina and Zamfara forests were responsible for the abduction.
Katsina State Governor Aminu Masari has disclosed that the abducted students of Government Secondary School, Kankara were alive and currently in a forest in Zamfara State.
“They (kidnapped schoolboys) are in Zamfara forests, we have got the information,” he told BBC Hausa Service in an interview on Wednesday.
Also speaking during an interview with Channels Television, the governor said efforts were on to ensure that the students returned home safely, adding that discussions were on with the suspected abductors through cattle breeders association Miyetti Allah to ensure the students’ release.
He said, “It is not true that two students died. I was in school on Saturday and interacted with some of the students who escaped. They did not say any student died.
“I also interacted with the two students who also escaped later; they did not tell me any of the abducted students died or were killed. The news of the death was speculative. The number of students we have yet to account for is 334, although some students have gone to their parents directly.
“We are discussing through the leadership of MACABAN, Miyetti Allah, with those suspected to have carried out the abduction, and I had a meeting with the Commissioner of Police and heads of security agencies two or three hours ago.”
The governor stressed that his administration would not pay ransom for the release of the students.
The erstwhile emir is also demanding N6.5 billon as damages for alleged infringement of his fundamental human rights.
The Zamfara State High Court has on Tuesday adjourned the case filed by the dethroned Emir of Maru, Alhaji Abubakar Ibrahim, against the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Muhammad Adamu, and five others to Dec. 16.
Noble Reporters Media (NoRM) reports that the former emir dragged the IGP and five others to court for illegal detention and defamation of character.
Ibrahim was sacked by the Zamfara State Government last year for allegedly aiding and abating banditry and was kept in Zamfara Government House for 11 months.
The other five respondents in the suit are the state’s Director-General of the Department of State Services (DSS), the Commissioner of Police, Assistant Director, DSS, and the Secretary to Zamfara State Government, Alhaji Bala Maru.
The Presiding Judge, Justice Bello Shinkafi, said the case was adjourned due to a number of pending cases before the court.
Addressing journalists at the court’s premises, the Counsel to the dethroned Emir, Sam Anosuke said “the matter was supposed to be ruled on today, but shifted to Dec. 16.
Anosuke said “the court is always overloaded, that is why the case is taking time.
He expressed the hope that his client would get justice at the end of the day.
Apart from Zamfara, bye-elections are also holding today in Lagos, Bayelsa and Cross River, among other places.
A large number of bandits have disrupted the voting process in Shiyar Galadima, Rini village, Zamfara State in the ongoing bye-election holding in the state.
Noble Reporters Media learnt that the bandits disrupted the voting exercise at Shiyar Galadima 008 Polling Unit when some officials of the Peoples Democratic Party allegedly arrived at the village.
Shiyar Galadima is in the Bakura Local Government Area, whose House of Assembly’s seat became vacant, following the death of the former lawmaker, Tukur Jekada, who passed on in May.
The commission had fixed December 5 for the bye-election.
A source told NoRM‘s known Media on Saturday, 5th of December, 2020 that trouble started when a PDP chieftain arrived at the polling unit which infuriated some of the voters.
He said, “As the suspected bandits arrived, security operatives had to fire gunshots into the air to restore law and order at the Shiyar Galadima 008, Polling Unit in Rini village.
“There was also an attempt to create chaos by the thugs at the polling units, but security operatives arrived immediately and rounded off the suspected thugs. Order was eventually restored, and the voting continued “
According to the governor, the extent of bad blood in the PDP is partly responsible for Mr Umahi’s defection to the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, saying “everyone feels welcome only in a house where he feels comfortable”.
Governor Bello Matawalle of Zamfara State has said that the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, is becoming hostile for its members, lamenting over his recent experience with his governor colleagues from the South-South region of the country.
Mr Matawalle, who made the lamentation in a statement on Friday by his media aide, Zailani Bappa, commended Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi State “for his bold decision” to leave the party.
He said: “If this trend of generating bad blood amongst us continues unabated, our great party will increasingly be on the receiving end as we move towards the election year, 2023.”
Speaking further, Mr Matawalle said: “I am having a very bad experience of recent from some of my PDP governor colleagues which I still find very puzzling.
“For instance, the South-South governors [who had been] accusing me in the media are PDP Governors.
“They are also the same people who brewed controversy over the so-called Zamfara gold, [which was] premised on deliberate misinformation and outright lies.
“Surprisingly, it is the APC Federal Government which has all the correct records on the gold mining issue that came out to defend me in this saga.
“As PDP colleagues, I expected the governors to contact me first and find out my own side of the story before unleashing their venom in the media,” Mr Matawalle posited.
“As the brouhaha lasted, I commended President Muhammadu Buhari for being supportive of our efforts to organise the economic sector in the state to avoid using the mineral deposits to promote insecurity in our dear state”
“Today, the Federal Government is issuing licences to deserving companies to operate in the mining sector in the state. The biggest company with an investment of billions of naira is owned by a Nigerian from Anambra state.
“And I wonder where the idea of Zamfara state owning the gold mines emanated from. As at now, the state Government does not have a hand in any of the mining activity in the state because the constitution does not empower us to do so,” Mr Matawalle noted.
The governor, therefore, called on the South-South governors “to eschew intellectual idleness and support its people to operate modular refineries as provided by the law and lift their people out of fear rather than sit behind and start chasing shadows rather than substance.”
A General Court Martial (GCM) sitting in the nation’s capital, Abuja has sentenced a soldier serving with the Nigerian Army to 55 years in prison for culpable homicide, theft and housebreaking.
The soldier, Lance Corporal Babangida Ibrahim was accused of robbing and killing one Bello Abdullahi Aliyu in Gidan Darib, Anka Local Government Area of Zamfara State on August 11, 2014.
He pleaded guilty to the four-count charge preferred against him and was sentenced in line with the provisions of the Armed Forces Act.
Delivering the judgement, the President of the Court, Major General Priye Fakrougha advocated the need for members of the Armed Forces to adhere strictly to rules and regulations guiding the conduct of military personnel in and out of uniform.
While reiterating the determination of the Army under the command of the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, to discharge its constitutional responsibility in a professional manner, Fakrougha warned that defaulters will be made to take responsibility of their actions
“Having listened to the plea of litigation of the Defence Counsel and the submission of the Prosecution Counsel, this General Court Martial finds the accused soldier guilty as he earlier pleaded of all the four-count charges,” he said.
“In this particular case before this court, there is no amount of sentence that will be commensurate to the life that has already been lost.
“Therefore, this General Court Martial, having found the accused soldier 2008/NA/61/2672, Lance Corporal Babangida Ibrahim guilty as he earlier pleaded, hereby sentence him as follows:
“Count one on culpable homicide not punishable with death contrary to and punishable under Section 224 of the Penal Code CAP P3, Laws of the Federation 2004 be awarded 40 years of imprisonment.
“Count two offence of housebreaking contrary to and punishable under Section 110 of the Armed Forces Act is awarded five years imprisonment.”
Lance Corporal Ibrahim was sentenced to 40 years in the first count, five years in the second, third and fourth counts.
Although the second, third and fourth counts are to run concurrently, the verdict is, however, subject to ratification by the Nigerian Army Council.
Troops of the Nigerian Army under Operation Sahel Sanity have rescued eight kidnapped victims and recovered weapons in Sokoto, Zamfara and Kastina States.
The Acting Director, Defence Media Operations, Defence Headquarters, Abuja, Brig.-Gen. Benard Onyeuko, disclosed this at a press briefing on Sunday in Faskari, Kastina State.
Noble Reporters Media reports that the Chief of Army Staff, Lt-Gen. Tukur Buratai, had on July 6 flagged off the Operation Sahel Sanity at Special Army Super Camp in Faskari as part of the Nigerian Army Day Celebration.
Onyeuko said the Chief of Army Staff flagged off the exercise to flush out armed bandits, cattle rustlers, kidnappers and other criminal elements from the North West Zone.
“The troops quickly moblised to the area and engaged the criminals, neutralising scores in the process.
“The situation was quickly brought under control and the troops subsequently dominated the area with patrols denying criminal elements freedom of action,” he said.
He said on July 9 while responding to a distress call, troops deployed at Gidan Baure in Jibiya Local Government Area of Katsina State rescued three young girls kidnapped by armed bandits at Sayau village.
Onyeuko said on the same day, troops also rescued three kidnapped victims in Isa Local Government Area of Sokoto State.
“Two other kidnap victims who were kidnapped on June 1, 2020 at Yayi village in Sabon Birni LGA of Sokoto State have been rescued by the troops.
“All the victims have been handed over to Katsina and Sokoto State Government officials for further action.
“Receiving a credible intelligence, the troops sprang an ambush at Gidan Jaja in Zurmi LGA of Zamfara, the bandits fled with heavy gunshot wounds, abandoning one AK 47 rifle in the process.
“While on aggressive mobile patrol, our troops intercepted three armed bandits who opened fire on troops.
“During the fire fight, one of the bandits was neutralised while others fled in disarray, one AK 47 rifle and one motorcycle were recovered,” he said.
Onyeuko also said on Saturday, July 11, troops laid ambush between Daki Takwas and Tashar Kuturu villages of Anka and Talata Mafara Local Government Areas of Zamfara.
He said troops made contact with the bandits who escaped with various degrees of gunshot wounds in the cover of darkness.
Onyeuko said troops had continued to dominate the area as a means of confidence building for the residents and farmers to continue their agricultural activities.
He added that items recovered included one motorcycle, 10 dane guns, one catarpult and one knife.
Others, he said, were one saw, 16 plugs, one axe and three cell phones.
Onyeuko, on behalf of the Chief of Army Staff, commended the troops for their gallantry, successes and the professionalism exhibited within the short period of the operation and urged them not to rest on their oars.
He reassured the people of the North-West Zone of the army’s commitment to restoring peace in the region.
The military says at least eight armed bandit leaders and several of their fighters have been neutralized in airstrikes carried out by the air component of operation Hadarin Daji in Zamfara state.
This followed reports that some armed bandits had relocated with a large number of rustled livestock from the Sokoto state side of the Kagara forest and have set up camp in the Zamfara State part of the forest.
According to the Defence Headquarters, as the attack aircraft approached the camp, some of the bandits and their leaders were seen fleeing towards the surrounding bushes but several of them were taken out as the aircraft struck the area of the forest.
Earlier on Thursday, the military said troops rescued three victims kidnapped by bandits in Chikun Local Government Area (LGA) of Kaduna State.
Major General John Enenche, who is the Coordinator of Defence Media Operations, confirmed this in a statement.
He noted that the victims were saved by troops of Operation Thunder Strike operating under the subsidiary Operation Accord.
The military spokesman explained that the rescue followed credible intelligence received by the soldiers on the kidnap of some people by armed bandits from their farm in Gwazunu village.
He added that a team of security operatives, promptly deployed in the scene, engaged the bandits with effective firepower.
“The bandits escaped in disarray with gunshot wounds thereby abandoning the kidnapped victims.
“All the three victims were successfully rescued unhurt and have been reunited with their families,” Enenche said.
Troops of Operation Accord in continuation of clearance operations against cattle rustlers and criminals have overrun more bandits camps, killing scores and apprehending others in Zamfara, the Defence Headquarters has said.
The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche, disclosed this in a statement on Sunday in Abuja.
Enenche explained that the troops of Operation Katsina under Operation Accord on June 5, intercepted a bandits’ gun-runner and logistics supplier at Mararraba Maigora in Faskari Local Government Area of the state.
He disclosed that items such as 496 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition and one Bajaj Motorcycle were recovered during the operation.
The coordinator further disclosed that the troops neutralised three bandits and captured four in a cordon and search operation at Yauyau and Zandam villages.
He said that items that included seven dane guns, three cellphones and two motorcycles recovered.
He stated that captured bandits were in custody for interrogations.
According to him, troops engaged fleeing bandits on Dunya-Dangeza road and recovered two dane guns and four motorcycles on June 6.
“Additionally, troops destroyed the Daban Jabi camp of a notorious Bandit leader known as Dan Jangeru.
“Also at Warnu village two bandits were neutralised while others escaped with gunshot wounds, one AK47 rifle was recovered in the process.
“The military high command congratulates Operation Hadarin Daji and Air Component of Operation Accord, for their dexterity.
“The general public is requested to continue to provide timely and credible information that would assist in eliminating bandits and other criminal elements in the country,” he said.
Gov. Bello Matawalle of Zamfara has lifted the ban on congregational prayers in Mosques and Churches placed to curtail the spread of the coronavirus in the state.
Matawalle made the announcement in a statewide radio broadcast on Thursday in Gusau.
“I want to commend the people of the state for supporting the government in our effort to frustrate the spread of coronavirus in our dear state by complying with the lockdown orders.
“In the light of this, therefore, we are suspending restrictions on congregational prayers in Mosques and Churches while appealing to people not to converge in large numbers at the same time,” he said.
Matawalle urged the people to continue to observe social distancing when they meet as well as using face masks to prevent the spread of the virus.
The governor, however, said markets in the state would remain closed until further notice, warning that the government would not take it lightly with violators of the orders.
NobleReporters reports that the COVID – 19 pandemics had so far claimed five lives, while 18 victims out of 73 confirmed cases had been discharged from the Gusau isolation center.
State, Alhaji Mohammed Ahmad Asha, has died of suspected COVID-19 complications.
He was said to have developed symptoms of Coronavirus, prompting his blood sample to been sent to Abuja for test.
Alhaji Mustafa Jafaru Kaura, Publicity Secretary for the Control and Prevention of COVID-19 in the state, said the late emir had been in isolation at the Yariman Bakura Specialist Hospital, Gusau, since Thursday.
He said the remains of the late emir were still in the hospital awaiting burial by officials of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.
Aged 71, the late emir was appointed in 2004 by the first civilian governor of the state, Alhaji Sani Yariman Bakura.
Governor of Zamfara State, Bello Matawalle, has ordered the immediate closure of all government offices in the state.
The move was to contain the spread of Coronavirus in the state.
No case of COVID-19 is yet to be confirmed in the state.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control had on Monday morning confirmed 36 cases of the virus with one death so far.
In his directive, Matawalle ordered all civil servants to stay at home.
However, he stated that health workers, firefighters and radio stations were exempted from the order.
He said, “I have ordered the immediate shutdown of all government offices, ministries, departments and agencies.
“Almajiri schools should also be closed. All state civil servants should remain at home.
“Gathering of more than 20 people is banned.
“Our hospitals, fire service and radio stations are not affected by this rule.”
The governor, who described the rapid increase of Covid-19 cases in the country as alarming, advised the people of Zamfara to practice social distancing, avoid large crowds and also take all necessary precautions as directed by the NCDC.
Zamfara Commissioner of Security and Home Affairs, Abubakar Dauran, has confirmed the kidnap of the District Head of Wuya in Anka Local Government Area of the state.
Speaking in Gusau on Saturday, NobleReporters learnt that Dauran said, “it is lamentable that these unrepentant bandits can still come into communities to carry out criminal activities in the state.
“It is true the district head, of Wuya, Mr Umar was kidnapped today (Saturday), and immediately on receipt of the unfortunate incident, we mobilised security personnel comprising the army and the police to the bushes in the area.
“Currently they are on trail of the criminals, I can assure you that we will catch them,” he said.
He stated that the security personnel was also supported by some repentant bandits who had earlier embraced peace.
N.Rs quotes an eye witness, Muhammadu Biyu as saying that the monarch, his son, Mannir Umar, and the Imam, Liman Murtala were kidnapped at gunpoint in a mosque during the day’s afternoon prayer by a group of bandits who entered the town on motorcycles.
He said on their arrival, the bandits went straight into the mosque while the people were observing the afternoon congregational prayers and whisked away from the victims.
The commissioner reassured the people of the state that the state government would not relent until a lasting peace was achieved in the state.
The Supreme Court in Abuja on Tuesday reserved ruling on the All Progressives Congress’ application for the review of its judgment nullifying the party’s victories in the general elections held in 2019 in Zamfara State, NobleReporters report
A five-man panel of the apex court led by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Tanko Muhammad, said the date of the ruling would be communicated to the parties.
The CJN made the announcement after the parties to the case concluded their submissions on the application on Tuesday.
The APC and the faction of the party in Zamfara State led by former Governor Abdulaziz Yari had filed the application for the review of the May 24, 2019 judgment, which nullified their victories at the general elections barely four days to their inauguration.
In the said May 24, 2019 judgment, the Supreme Court had declared that APC failed to conduct valid primaries and, therefore, had no candidates in the 2019 general elections.
The apex court had declared the votes polled by the APC in the elections as wasted.
The Peoples Democratic Party and its candidates, who polled the next highest votes in the elections, were declared winners of the exercise and eventually inaugurated.
The APC’s application for the review of the May 24, 2019 judgment was opposed by the Senator Kabiru Marafa-led faction of the party in the state.
APC’s lawyer, Chief Robert Clarke (SAN), on Tuesday urged the court to grant his clients’ application by setting aside the consequential order directing that candidates with the next highest votes be sworn in.
He urged the apex court to order the APC to conduct fresh primaries.
He argued that the previous orders of the apex court were made without jurisdiction.
But the Marafa faction’s lawyer, Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN), urged the apex court to dismiss the application and award huge and punitive costs against the applicants’ lawyer.
The Zamfara Government on Friday said it has discovered 200 ghost medical doctors from its payroll.
The state Commissioner for Finance, Alhaji Rabi’u Garba, who disclosed this to newsmen in Gusau, noted that the ghost doctors were uncovered during the ongoing civil servants verification exercise under the State Hospital Service Management Board (HSMB).
“When the present administration came in, we had 287 medical doctors in the government’s payroll purported to be working in various General Hospitals across the state under HSMB.
“After the investigation, we discovered that only 87 doctors are genuine, all the remaining 200 were non-existent.
“Before now, the state government use to pay N389 million as monthly salary to doctors and other healthcare workers under the board,” Garba said
According to him, with the development the state government will be saving N120 million monthly from the ghost workers under the board.
“Another serious problem we found in the board was that some workers without health qualifications were receiving health workers salary.
“We met a report of previous administration that verify non-health workers working in health sector receiving health workers salary.
“We consider to implement that report, because as a responsible government we cannot allow somebody with SSCE or other non-qualifications to be collecting duty call and shift allowances from the government,” he added.
The commissioner added that the government also discovered that some officials of the board and from the ministry of finance are also involved in the scam.
“We are directed by Governor Bello Matawalle to carryout investigation exercise to ensure sanity in the state’s civil servants payroll.
“After the investigation we are going to sue any government official found in the scam,” Garba said.
The All Progressives Congress in Zamfara State has said it would approach the Supreme Court for a review of the judgement awarding its victories in the 2019 general elections.
The immediate-past governor of the state, Abdul-Azeez Yari, disclosed this on Tuesday in an interview after leading the state APC to a meeting with the National Working Committee of the party in Abuja.
At the meeting presided over by the APC National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, the party accused the Governor Bello Matawalle-led Peoples Democratic Party of using the police to disrupt their meetings as well as detaining and imprisoning their members.
Yari said the decision to approach the apex court for a review followed the protest that greeted the judgement nullifying the victory of the PDP Emeka Ihedioha as governor of Imo State.
He said, “We have heard that the National Chairman of the PDP (Uche Secondus) staged a protest to the US Embassy. We also decided to be there too as the APC with some national leaders to tell the US that what PDP is complaining in Imo we got a more painful one in Zamfara.
“The apex court decided to award our gains to the PDP which has never happened before. We are also seeking the apex court to review this judgement because it is purely injustice to us.”