Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja The Industrial Policy and Competitiveness Advisory Council has thrown its weight behind President Muhammadu Buhari’s decision to consult widely before Nigeria signs the African Continental Free Trade Agreement. President Buhari had, in March, cancelled a trip to Kigali, Rwanda, where an extra-ordinary summit of African Union was scheduled to sign the agreement….
Islamist militants, Boko Haram, released a new video purporting to show at least 14 of the Chibok schoolgirls who were kidnapped on April 14, 2014.
Despite a concerted global campaign for their release, and talks between the Federal Government and Boko Haram, the girls shown in the recording have vowed not to return to their parents in Chibok, Borno State.
The 20-minute-long video is the first since May 2017, when another woman, who also claimed to be among the 276 seized from the town in Borno State said she wanted to stay.
Both videos will compound the suffering of the girls’ families and friends but also indicate the extent to which they may have become influenced by their captors.
All of those who were shown on camera were wearing black or blue hijabs and at least three were carrying babies.
One of the students, her face covered by a veil, said: “We are the Chibok girls that you cry for us to return to you. By the grace of Allah, we will not return to you.
“Poor souls, we pity our other Chibok girls who chose to return to Nigeria. Allah blessed you and brought you to the caliphate for you to worship your creator.
“But instead, you chose to return to unbelief.”
It was not clear when or where the latest message, in Hausa and the local Chibok language, was recorded or whether those who appeared on camera were under duress.
The woman who spoke in the video said Boko Haram factional leader, Abubakar Shekau, has “married us off. We live in comfort. He provides us with everything. We lack nothing,” she added.
Shekau was also seen, firing a heavy machine gun and making a 13-minute-long sermon in which he said the remaining girls had “understood the folly” of secular education.
Boko Haram’s name broadly translates into English from the Hausa that is widely spoken in northern Nigeria as “Western education is sinful.”
The group has repeatedly attacked and destroyed schools teaching a secular curriculum in its campaign to create a hardline Islamic state in North East Nigeria.
The terrorists seized 276 students from the Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok, in a mostly-Christian town in 2014, which triggered global condemnation.
Fifty-nine of them managed to escape in the hours that followed.
A campaign for the release of their classmates has had the support of Hollywood stars to global leaders.
A total of 107 girls have now been either found, rescued or released, as part of government negotiations with the Islamic State (IS) group affiliate.
They have now returned to the North East and are back in education at the American University of Nigeria, Yola, Adamawa State.
On January 4, 2018, the Nigerian Army said it rescued another of the girls’ classmates in Pulka, Borno State, near the border with Cameroun.
Boko Haram has used kidnapping as a weapon of war in the conflict, which has killed at least 20,000 people in the North East and has displaced more than 2.6 million.
Thousands of women and young girls have been seized and held hostage, including as sex slaves, while men and young boys have been forcibly recruited to fight alongside the militants.
The video also shows a group of policewomen, who were also abducted in Borno, last year.
— 16th April 2018
Wole Balogun, Ado-Ekiti Immediate past Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, on Sunday, declared that many of the people he made when he was governor of the state later betrayed him after he lost the June 21, 2014 for a re-election. Fayemi also said he has forgiven the ‘betrayers’ whom he said allegedly sponsored…
— 16th April 2018
The All Progressives Congress (APC), on Sunday, announced the debut of its newly-designed website and other official social media accounts. This was after the party recently acknowledged that it had no official Twitter handle and distanced itself from a Twitter handle, @APCNigeria. The @APCNigeria twitter handle which is, however, a verified account, on Saturday, made…
— 16th April 2018
Paul Osuyi, Asaba Some police officers attached to an outpost in Eku, Ethiope East Local Government Area of Delta State, are facing interrogation by authorities of the State Police Command following the invasion of the outpost by a gang hoodlums suspected to be cultists last week. Public Relations Officer of the Command, DSP Andrew Aniamaka,…
— 16th April 2018
Moshood Adebayo The Lagos State Tourism Summit has commenced at the Eko Hotel & Suites, on Victoria Island. The summit has at its theme Destination Lagos: Towards a Sustainable Tourism-Driven Economy and was declared open by Minister of Information, Culture & Culture, Lai Mohammed. The key note Speaker at the event is a former President…
Entertainment— 15th April 2018
Nollywood movie Ojukokoro and three other flicks – Oblivious, The Encounter, and Tell Me Sweet Something – were screened on Saturday night at Metrograph Theatre, New York. Ojukokoro (greed) is the hilarious feature film leading the line-up at the inaugural ‘Nollywood 3.0 Images and Stories From the African Diaspora Film Series’ in New York City….
South-West Report— 12th April 2018
Bamigbola Gbolagunte, Akure The history of Yoruba is certainly not complete without reference to Oranmiyan, a direct descendant of Oduduwa, the progenitor of the race. Oduduwa was believed to have descended from heaven and landed on Ile-Ife, Osun State, and from where he founded other Yoruba towns. Oranmiyan was a warrior who fought many wars…
Abuja Metro— 11th April 2018
Nkechi Onyele & Marcus Nkire A red light area is not only a place where prostitution is carried out or men go to buy sex; it is also a place where generations live and where children are born and raised. Children of women in prostitution who live in red…
Oriental News— 11th April 2018
…Want contractor back on site Okey Sampson, Aba Residents of part of Ogbor Hill, Aba, the commercial capital of Abia State comprising Federal Housing Estate, Pepple, Aguwa, Akpu, Ovom roads and other adjourning areas breathed a sigh of relief when in 2001, the administration of Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu constructed access link from Ogbor Hill…
Features— 16th April 2018
Emma Emeozor, [email protected] Ian Khama took the international community by surprise when he announced early in the month that he was voluntarily stepping down as president of Botswana. The 65-year-old leader will be the second African president to step down in recent time after Angola’s former President Jose Eduardo dos Santos, 75. Kham’s announcement came not…
Literary Review— 14th April 2018
Henry Akubuiro, Lagos Perhaps more than any other group in the last three decades, the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), has contributed to the promotion of reading and discovery of new literary talents in Nigeria. Founded in 1981 by the legendary novelist, Chinua Achebe, the association has through, its routine creative writing workshops, award of…
Lifeline— 16th April 2018
Job Osazuwa They sway and dangle from electric poles, constituting a scary sight. Some hang so low that you could touch them with your hands. These sagging and hanging cables and wires have become a familiar sight in major cities across Nigeria. And the situation has become a serious cause of concern as it poses…
Education Review— 10th April 2018
Clement Adeyi, Osogbo Prof. Eyitope Ogunbodede who was inaugurated as the 11th substantive Vice Chancellor of the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Osun State in June last year, bares his mind on efforts being put in place by his administration to improve on the school’s infrastructure, maintain the rich academic standard that the university is…
TSWeekend— 13th April 2018
Fatimah Muhammad-Omolaja Fast rising actor, Yomi Fabiyi lost his beloved mother recently. But much as he still feels the pain of her demise, he takes solace in the advice she gave him while alive. In an online chat with the thespian, he talked about how his late mother’s advice has continued to sustain him in…
Opinion— 16th April 2018
Iliyasu Gadu Against the goodwill, hope and expectations that Nigerians invested in him and elected him to power in 2015, President Muhammadu Buhari has not just delivered precious little, but has on account of his stewardship so far, lost the plot. There is no other way to describe a situation in which a person who…
The mistake we have been making in this country since our democratic evolution is to vote for political parties irrespective of candidatures. This is majorly why we have had issues with most of the characters foisted on us. If it were not so, I do not see how Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State, Ayo Fayose…
Okigwe South Federal Constituency is fast gaining popularity as the nation prepares for next year’s general elections. This popularity derives from the meddlesomeness of Governor Rochas Okorocha, who, not being satisfied with his vile endorsement of his son in-law as his successor, has traversed the entire landscape of the state, dictating who gets what post…
Last Monday, the All-Progressives Congress likely standard bearer in the 2019 presidential election finally verbalised the message we had long inferred from his body language. The somewhat shock announcement came during his party’s National Executive Committee meeting in Abuja, a day before the president left for London to attend to commonwealth and health matters. It…
As a newspaper publisher, I am quite familiar with the famous journalism dictum: “Comments are free, facts are sacred.” What this means is that everyone has a right to hold and express his opinion without let or hindrance. But while that is true, I haven’t found where it is written or stated that you can…
The Federal Government has been releasing what it calls the looters’ list. The first episode of the soap opera came with its controversies. Before the minister of information, Lai Mohammed, could release the second episode, a number of characters in the cast list had threatened court action. Some have wondered why the list contained mainly…
Often times, I wish I was never on WhatsApp because it can be annoying. My phone beeps endlessly with messages that don’t make sense at all. For me, having to juggle between reading tons of inspirational quotes that have no bearing with my life, to dealing with moral stuffs threatening me to forward to others…
It is another windy and rainy day, everyone has closed and I even had to force Debbie to leave, assuring her that I will lock up properly when I am done. She left reluctantly probably convinced I will not be able to cope without her, I should feel insulted. I was so engrossed in what…
Money is good. It enables you live well and work well. The argument of the poor that money is bad is just an anticipatory defence mechanism. But money is good when it is a blessing that adds no sorrow; when it is the product of hard work and sincere efforts. Pastor Enoch Adeboye, General Overseer…
Only leaders regarded by their followers as caring are good enough. Leaders, whether in the private or public sector, must care about the larger society, and not just immediate profit and private acquisitions. Aristotle’s the common good is now a creed among social scientists. Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has in the last few years become…
Suddenly a new political fever is gripping the nation. If I ask you to guess, you are likely to point to the two major political parties, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) and also tell me how useless they have become to our quest for a new Nigeria. I am…