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NGO accuses Ganduje of using anti-graft agency to witch hunt Emir Sanusi

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Nasiru Yusuf

The Centre for Awareness on Justice and Accountability (CAJA) has accused governor Abdullahi Ganduje of hiding behind Kano state Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission to witch hunt the deposed Emir of Kano Muhammad Sanusi II.

CAJA made the accusation in a statement signed by its Justice and accountability officer, Maryam Ahmad Abubakar and sent to Kano Focus on Wednesday.

“The recent press statement by the governor through his press secretary, directing the Kano State Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission, to resume investigation of the Emir, has vindicated the belief of the people that it is the governor that has been influencing the function of the commission, which by its Act, should be independent from any interference.”

“At a moment like this, we expect the governor to put genuine efforts in addressing the spread of the COVID-19, cushioning the effect of the current hardship to the vulnerable indigenes, and restoring the economic activities of the state that have been suffering even before the lockdown regime, not just nagging on an issue that continues to bring disunity not only among the people of the state, but even among some governors in the country.

“His unguarded utterances on the Kano elders since the beginning of this issue and his refusal to meet with the Northern Elders Forum, have no doubt, proved that the governor is more interested in witch-hunting the emir rather than amicable resolution of the issue.

“For the commission, yes, we may agree and disagree with its modus operandi, but that is purely on principle,” the statement said.

CAJA also advised the anti-corruption commission to strengthen its work by building on its landmark achievements, including  the recent price stability and its doggedness in guaranteeing justice to the weaker ones in the society.

According to CAJA if the commission succumbs to external influence, to work on the governor’s directives, such achievements can easily be washed away.

To this end CAJA called on governor Ganduje and all Nigerian governors, “to always respect the independence of the government’s independent bodies by allowing them to work according to the Acts of such bodies and without any external interference from the governors or anybody acting on their behalf.”

It could be recalled that, Mr Ganduje has on Monday said the Kano State Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission would go on with the process of probing the former Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II, because the effort to stop the probe was quashed by a competent court of law.

Mr Ganduje said “Our state Anti-Corruption Agency will continue probing the former Emir over the issues he has with them.”

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Kano High Court acquits 2 suspected armed robbers detained for 13 years

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Nasiru Yusuf

A Kano State High Court has disçharged and acquitted two suspected armed robbers accused of killing their victim, Bako Zangina, an offense punishable by death.

Kano Focus reports that Justice Suleman Namalam held that though the court has no doubt that the accused are criminals having been convicted previously, the prosecution has failed to estabilish the ingredient of the offence beyond reasonable doubt in the instant case.

The accused Isyaku Umar otherwise known as ‘Small’ and Ibrahim Suleiman were arraigned in court on three counts charges of conspiracy,attempted armed robbery and culpable homicide punishable by death.

The two accused have been in custody since October 2007 for the alleged killing of Bako Zangina.

The court held that while the prosecution established the death of the victim, it failed to establish three ingredients of offense linking the identity of the accused to the crime thereby creating doubt.

The trial judge held that failure of the prosecution to prove the case beyond reasonable doubt left the court with no option than to discharge and acquitt the two accused.

The two accused persons have been in detention for over 13 years and have previously been tried and convicted for armed robbery.

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Kano wins national award in the fight against TB, leprosy

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Nasiru Yusuf

Kano State Tuberculosis and Leprosy Control Program has won the twin National Tuberculosis and Leprosy awards for the year 2020.

Kano Focus reports that, the awards were announced by the Nigeria National TB, Leprosy and Buruli Ulcer Control program during the Annual Review meeting held in Port Harcourt, Rivers State Capital.

Kano get the award as the state with highest consistent quarterly TB case notification for 2020 and the highest TB testing laboratory using GeneXpert Machine.

This is the first time the state have won such National TB and Leprosy Awards.

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FG signs US$1.959bn Kano-Maradi railway project

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Nasiru Yusuf

The federal government has on Monday signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Mota-Engil Group for the construction of US$1.959 billion Kano-Maradi Standard gauge railway line.

Kano Focus reports that the Minister of transportation, Rotimi Amaechi signed on behalf of the federal government while the Managing Director, Mota- Engil, Antonio Gvoea signed on behalf of the contracting firm.

The new railway corridor which is to be located in northern Nigeria will run through Kano, Jigawa and Katsina states and through Niger Republic territory as far as Maradi.

Other cities to benefit directly from the passage of the rail route are Danbatta, Kazaure, Daura, Mashi, Katsina and Jibiya.

A statement signed by Eric Ojiekwe, Director, Press and Public Relations, Ministry of Transportation noted that the 283.750-kilometre rail line besides developing freight and passenger transport, “will be integrated with road transport to make a great contribution to the local economy as well as an important development in the social sector.”

The project duration is for 36 months and the contract type is Engineering, Procurement and Construction.

The signing ceremony was witnessed by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Transportation, Magdalene Ajani; Director, Legal Services, Pius Oteh; Managing Director, Mota-Engil Group, Antonio Gvoea; Head of Legal, Mota- Engil Group, Cameron Beverley; Magajin Garin Kano, Muhammad Wada; Director, Mota-Engil Group, Kola Abdulkarim; Vice President, Mota-Engil Group, Mohammed Abdul-Razaq; Nigerian Ambassador to Germany, Yusuf Tuggar; Managing Director, Nigerian Ports Authority, Hadiza Bala-Usman among other personalities.

Mota-Engil is a Portuguese conglomerate with diverse interest in construction, transportation, public works, port operations, waste, water and logistics with presence in 23 countries spread across Africa, Europe and Latin America.

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