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UK Govt Apologizes For Suspending Visa Applications For Visitors From Nigeria

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The United Kingdom has tendered apology for pausing visa applications for Nigerians who wish to visit the UK anytime soon.

The British High Commissioner to Nigeria noted in a statement that due to the covid-19 Omicron variant confirmed in travellers from Nigeria, it has taken a tough decision to stop visitors from the country till further notice.

The statement reads:

“To support the UK Government’s aim to protect public health from CoviD-19 and associated variants of concern (VOCa. UK Visas & Immigration (UKV) will pause making decisions on visitor visa aplications in all red list countries including Nigeria, until travel restrictions are lifted.

“Visit visas cover travel to the UK for Tourism, Visiting family and friends,
Undertaking short term business activties, taking part in research or exchange programme.

“You will not receive a decision on your visit visa application whilst red
list travel restrictions remain in place.

“You wil not be able to request a refund of your visa fee once you have given your biometrics at a Visa Application Centre (VAC).

“We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.”

Meanwhile, the latest directive for visitors does not affect Nigerian UK citizens and residents who would be allowed entry on strict protocol compliance.

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Defence Minister hails former COAS, Amb Buratai’s superlative service to armed forces

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From Godwin Tsa, Abuja

The Minister of Defence, Maj Gen Bashir Salihi Magashi (rtd), has heaped praises on former Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai (rtd) for his contributions to the Armed Forces.

Speaking at a book presentation in Abuja, Magashi said not only did the Ambassador to the Benin Republic contribute to the peace and security of the country, but he was also a bridge-builder in strengthening civil-military relations.

The book tilted, ‘The Exploits of Buratai, written by UK-based scholar, Best Agbese, was in honour of the former Army Chief at the International Conference Center, Abuja.

Represented by his Special Adviser, Technical, Major General Ahmed Tijani Jibrin (rtd), the minister said Buratai’s impact cut across various aspects but most notably in civil-military affairs.

He said, “...-modern soldier is not only a fighter but also a peacekeeper, guardian, diplomat and social worker.

“The main goal of the modern military activity is no longer exclusively to depict an adversary but the creation of a safe environment for a comprehensive exclusive post-conflict political and social order. These realities clearly underscore the significance of civil-military relations as a management tool in the Defence sector”.

And according to Magashi, Buratai took this alliance to another level, evident in the establishment of the civilian Joint Task Force.

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He added, “The accomplishment of this all-important feat is attributable to the efforts of Buratai who during his tenure as COAS strengthened and repositioned the civil-military relationship of the Nigerian Army to what we have today.

“I wish to therefore commend Gen Buratai for his contributions to the Nigerian Army, the entire Armed Forces and indeed Nigeria”.

Magashi, however, said the Military is employing kinetic power and also deploying a non-kinetic approach in prosecuting various counter-terrorism and anti-banditry campaigns to restore normalcy in parts of the Country.

Also at the event was Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State; Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed; Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Uche Ogah as well as the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen Faruk Yahaya.

Others were Director-General National Orientation Agency, Dr Garba Abari, the Director-General (DG) Nigerian Army Resource Centre (NARC), Major General Garba Ayodeji Wahab (rtd) as well as other retired top military officers.

The Conservator-General, National Parks Service, Dr Ibrahim Musa Goni, the Director-General Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, National Youth Service Corps as well as the Bangladesh High Commissioner to Nigeria, His Excellency, Masudur Rahman and his Congolese counterpart were also present.

Some traditional and religious leaders were also fully at the event.

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Former Kano Commissioner arraigned for defamation, inciting disaffection against Ganduje

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From Desmond Mgboh, Kano

A former Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure in Kano State, Mauzu Magaji Dansarauniya, has been arraigned before a Senior Magistrate Court in the state.

The former Commissioner, who is an ardent critic of Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, Kano State Governor, was arrested on Thursday in Abuja after an interview session with a television station and flown to Kano.

Speaking on the development, spokesman of the Kano State Police Command, Abdullahi Haruna Kiyawa said that the accused person failed to honour an invitation for questioning by the police.

He added that the police had invited him on the directive of a court adding that they were investigating him for charges of defamation of character, intentional insult, injurious falsehood and inciting disturbance.

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Saturday Sun gathered that week ago, a complaint was lodged against him by the state governor, Abddullahi Umar Ganduje.

A petition by the solicitors of the Governor, Adekunle Taiye Falola and dated January 10th was sent to the Presiding Magistrate , Magistrate Court N0 58, Honourablle Justice Aloma Mariam, Nomansland Kano.
The governor, through his solicitors, accused Mauzu Magaji Dansarauniya of criminal defamation of character, assault, intentional insult with the intent to provoke breach of peace as well as inciting disturbance and disaffection against him and the members of his family contrary to the provisions of Section 114, 264 and 399 of the Penal Code.

It could be recalled that the former Commissioner was sacked by Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje for allegedly celebrating the death of the former Chief of Staff to the President, the late Abba Kyari on his Facebook page.

He was later reappointed as the Executive Chairman State NNPC/ AKK Gas Pipeline Project and Gas Implementation Committee, but was sacked again by Governor Ganduje due to alleged incompetence.

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Vacant Stool: Royal families, kingmakers kick against EndSARS protester as long designate

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By Lukman Olabiyi

Royal families in Ikeja, Capital of Lagos state have kicked against the nomination of a 33-year-old Temitope Ibikunle as king designate for vacant stool of Olu of Ikeja.

Ibikunle, who is from Oshoja ruling house, was a youth representative on the now-defunct Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry on Restitution for victims of SARS related Abuses and other matters.

The stool of Olu of Ikeja had been vacant for nine years after the demise of Oba Rauf Matemi, Amore 1, who joined his ancestors in Oct. 2014.

Speaking at a news briefing held on Friday at Ikeja, leaders of some royal families and kingmakers in the kingdom, said that Prince Tajudeen Murtala, who had earlier been unveiled as king-elect remained the sole candidate for the throne.

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Oluwo of Ikeja Land, Chief Mureni Illo and Prince Jamiu Folami, who spoke on behalf of others, accused politicians in the area of blocking the progress of Ikeja land, by sabotaging their efforts at installing the king-elect.

They appealed to the state government to allow the will of the indigenes of Ikeja Kingdom to prevail, by giving approved to the installation of Prince Murtala as their new king.

Specifically, the Oluwo of Ikeja Land raised the alarm that his life was in danger, due to his stance on the issue.

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