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INEC exempts corp members from participating in Bebeji by-election

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Mukhtar Yahya Usman

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has exempted members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) from participating in the January 25 by-election in Bebeji local government area of Kano state due to security issues.

This was revealed on Tuesday by the Kano state Resident Electoral Commissioner of INEC, Riskua Arabi Shehu, at a press conference in Kano.

Kano Focus reports that the decision might have been taken to avert revenge on corp members by Bebeji residents following the alleged killing of an 8-year-old boy in the area by an NYSC member Jepthan Peter in October 2019.

Mr Peter was remanded in prison custody on January 4, 2020 by a Magistrate Court in Nomansland, pending his bail application hearing slated for February 4, 2020.

It could be recalled that the Court of Appeal sitting in Kaduna had nullified the elections of two Kano federal constituencies of Kiru/Bebeji and Tudun wada/Doguwa.

Also the court ordered the electoral body to conduct a re-run election in the two federal constituencies.

Obeying the court orders, INEC had fixed Saturday, January, 25th for the conduct of the elections.

However Mr Shehu, a professor of biochemistry said a total of 3,456 ad-hoc staff were recruited from NYSC and students of Bayero University Kano, and trained to participate in the election.

But he explained that for security reasons, INEC has decided to exclude corp members from the participating in the elections.

He said the rerun elections will be conducted in 60 registration areas across the affected local government areas with a total number 414,923 registered voters in 698 polling units and 166 voting points.

“The Independent National Electoral Commission INEC at its meeting held no 5th December 2019 approved that all the court ordered rerun elections should be conducted on Saturday 25th January, 2020.

“It is very important for all stakeholders to demonstrate more commitments towards the success of the elections, he said.

He also said the commission finds the increasing trend of violence in recent elections very disheartening despite all the efforts to curtail it.

Mr Shehu however, vowed that INEC would no longer allow violence to mar the credibility of elections.

“The elections will be suspended in the events of threat to the safety of voters,personnel and materials,” he said.

Similarly, Kano state Commissioner of Police (CP) Habu Ahmadu Sani has warned politicians to desist from organizing violence before, during and after the elections.

He said the police would deal decisively with anyone caught trying to disrupt the peaceful conduct of the elections.

Mr Sani added that the police command will deploy its personnel to all the poling units to ensure smooth and successful elections.

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Kano Anti corruption investigates refugee commission over alleged diversion of palliatives

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Aminu Abdullahi

Kano State Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission says it will investigate alleged corrupt practices in the disbursement of relief materials by National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (NCFR).

Kano Focus reports that the chairman of the commission Muhyi Magaji Rimin Gado revealed this while receiving the new Commissioner Independent Corrupt Practices and ther related offences Commission (ICPC ) in charge of Kano zone.

Mr Rimin Gado said PCACC will partner ICPC to investigate the alleged corrupt practices in the disbursement of relief materials.

He noted with dismay that some officials saddled with the responsibility of distributing the items to the needy, was accused of diverting it.

While congratulating the new Commissioner over his recent posting to Kano office of the ICPC, Mr Rimingado solicit for synergy between the two commissions towards checkmating corrupt practices in the state.

In his remarks, the state Commissioner of ICPC, Ibrahim Kagara, assured to work with PCACC in the fight against corruption.

Kagara, described corruption as a serious problem that required a concerted efforts of all stakeholders to tackle it decisively.

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Court jails Cameroonian for human trafficking

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Justice

Nasiru Yusuf

A Federal High Court sitting in Kano, on Thursday, sentenced a 36-year-old Cameroonian, Hoth Simplice-Patrick, to 15 years in correctional centre without option of fine for human trafficking.

Kano Focus reports that the convict, who lives at Sabon Gari Quarters Kano, was arraigned by the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons(NAPTIP) on three-count charge bordering around human trafficking.

The trial judge, Sa’adatu Ibrahim-Mark, said the court found the defendant guilty for human trafficking.

She sentenced the convict to five years in correctional centre each on the three count charge without option of fine, adding that the sentence starts from the date of his arrest.

Earlier, The Prosecution Counsel, Abdullahi Babale, told the court that NAPTIP in collaboration with Joint Border Task Force(JBTF) arrested the defendant in July 2020.

Mr Babale said that on July 15, 2020 the convict acting on behalf of his Principal master one Albany now at large “procured the illegal entry of two female and one male between the ages of 17 to 29-years-old, of Lagos State to Libya enroute Kano  in which they are not permanent residents or citizens “

The convict, Simplice-Patrick, pleaded guilty to the charges.

According to the prosecutor, the offence contravenes Section 26 (1) of the trafficking in Persons(Prohibition) Act 2015.

The defence counsel, Murtala Isa, pleaded to court for leniency on behalf of his client as he is first time offender.

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Court convicts ponzi scheme operator in Kano, orders return of N110m to victims

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Nasiru Yusuf

The Federal High Court Kano presided over by Lewis Allagoa has convicted one Maryam Abu Shinga on one count amended charge of retention of proceeds of crime. She was also ordered to pay the sum of N110, 000,000 in restitution to victims

Kano Focus reports that the convict was said to have lured her victims into a phony gold mining investment where she represented that the investor stands to earn 300% profit.

She claimed that when an investor invests N500, 000, such investor could earn one million five hundred thousand Naira as returns on investment over a period of four weeks.

Investigation, however, revealed that the convict was never into gold mining or any such investment. It was also discovered that even though Shinga was able to pay some early investors with funds taken from later investors, she allegedly diverted three hundred and ninety-four million, five hundred and forty-one thousand, nine Hundred and ten Naira belonging to other investors.

Upon arraignment, Shinga pleaded ‘not guilty’ thereby setting the stage for trial.

During the trial which commenced on January 23, 2020, the prosecution called five witnesses and tendered several documents in evidence. However, before the prosecution could close its case, the convict opted for a plea bargain.

In his judgment, Allagoa accepted the terms of a plea bargain agreement, convicted and sentenced the defendant to restitute the complainants in the sum of N110, 000,000.

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