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Nigeria worries over Ghana’s continuous closure of shops

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National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTS) President, Ken Ukuoha (L) and the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa

National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTS) President, Ken Ukuoha (L) and the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa

Nigeria has expressed concern over the continued closure of Nigerians shops in Ghana two weeks after President Koffi Nana-Akudo gave the order to reopen them.

The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa, said in Abuja when the National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTS) led by its President, Ken Ukuoha, paid her a visit.

Ukuoha had led the Nigerian and Ghanaian Chapters of the union to present a petition on the continuous closure of their shops to President Mohammadu Buhari through Dabiri Erewa’s office.

Nigerian traders were shut-out of their business premises in pursuance of the eviction order dated 27th July 2018.

The Ghanaian authority was demanding that traders must have one million dollars as minimum foreign investment capital to do business in Ghana as stipulated its Ministry of Trade and Industry (GIPC) Act, 2013.

She expressed worry that in spite the assurance of President of Ghana to Buhari that the shops will be re-opened, and despite an instruction to reopen the shops on Sept 27, the shops still remain closed.

I am just going to start by appealing to you I know it is painful it is emotional, it is deep but I just urged to remain calm.

“I am surprised that after the announcement of President of Ghana on the reopening of the locked shops, they still remained under lock up till now.

“The president of Ghana paid a courtesy call on our president during the UN General Assembly in New York and he assured him that Nigerian traders were not being targeted

“When they said foreigners, he assured that Nigerians were not the target; and since that time which was on Sept. 27, I am very surprised that as at today over 400 shops were still under lock in Ghana,” she said.

Dabiri-Erewa expressed dismay that Ghanaian president yet to honour his promise to reopen the closed shops 13 days after.

The presidential aide promised to convey the union’s message to the president who he said was the Chairman of the ECOWAS about what their petition.

She said that President Buhari as the ECOWAS chairman would ensure that the matter is resolved once and for all.

She urged the traders not to take laws into their hands no matter how provocative the situation may but to remain calm

“I am sure that the matter will be resolved between the two presidents and will be treated as ECOWAS matter.

“I know it is not only Nigerians that are affected but other ECOWAS nationals as well but I know that Nigerians are the largest.

“On behalf of the government I advised and urge to remain calm because this is an ECOWAS matter and we cannot be doing this to ourselves,” she said.

While noting that millions of Ghanaian traders in Nigeria were treated as brothers she appealed to the union not to even think about retaliation but rather be calm and obey their laws.

“It is only a matter of time when this would resolved, it is a matter of days these long faces would soon smile because President Buhari would surely intervene,” she assured them.

Ukuoha said that in 2018, the Ministry of Trade and Industry(GIPC) and Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA) in a joint operation established a taskforce with specific mandate to clamp down on Nigerian traders.

He said that this had eventually resulted in the ongoing closure of over 400 Nigerian Traders’ shops in Kumasi and the Ashanti region of Ghana.

“We are deeply worried with the high level of government complicity and state sponsored incitement and xenophobic attacks on Nigerians on the street of Ghana.

“We can provide evidence based on information in video clips and recorded attacks leaving countless Nigerian traders at various hospitals.

He noted with concern that Ghanaian security continually expressed helplessness by turning their eyes the other way, when Ghanaian hired thugs and criminals unleash mayhem on Nigerians, molesting and looting their goods and properties.

He said among NANTs demand, is the immediate reopening of the over 400 Nigerian owned locked shops in Ghana, as well as the immediate return of all seized goods.

He said the government should undertake to protect and provide security for all Nigerian traders and families and be held accountable for any ill treatment on Nigerian traders, or Nigerian citizens residing in Ghana.

Nigerians should not be subject to arbitrary and punitive taxation. GIPC Act should not be applied on Nigerian traders as we are not foreigners in Ghana but bonafide community citizens under ECOWAS Law, he stated.

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Troops inflict devastating casualty on Boko Haram terrorists in fresh Baga encounter

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Combined Special Forces troops of the Nigerian Army, Navy and the Air Force operating under the auspices of Operation LAfiYA DOLE in the ongoing counter terrorism and counter insurgency operations in northern Borno have inflicted devastating man and equipment casualty on Boko Haram terrorists in a fresh encounter with the dissidents in the late hours of Saturday 19 January 2018.

The terrorists, armed with two Gun trucks, a vehicle laden with Improvised Explosive Device (IED) and a suicide bomber met their water loo while frantically fighting to break into the formidable defensive position of the troops. The gallant troops responded swiftly in a fierce counter offensive, unleashing superior and overwhelming firepower on the terrorists and neutralizied five of them, including a driver and a gunner firing from a gun truck, a suicide bomber in a vehicle loaded with IED and two other terrorists.

In the ferrocious counter attack, the valiant troops destroyed one Gun truck ànd one IED – Carrying vehicle. The troops also recovered one Anti Aircraft Gun and three AK 47 Rifles belonging to the terrorists. The troops are relentless and in high morale as they continue in hot pursuit of some of the terrorists who fled the scene of the encounter when they were overpowered by the troops.

It will be recalled, that only recently, the special forces troops resolutely dealt a deadly blow on the terrorists in a battle in which the terrorists attempted to contest the control over Baga town with the Special Forces troops.

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Boko Haram: Nigerian Army seeks strategic military partnership

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…As COAS visits Republic of Korea

As part of the efforts to further enhance the professional efficiency and capabilities of the Nigerian Army, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant General TY Buratai has led a delegation to the Republic of Korea to seek strategic bi-lateral collaboration in the fight against terrorism and insurgency. The visit which was at the instance of KIA Motors Corporation, was further aimed at improving the capacity building of the Nigerian Army by Republic of Korea in the areas of military logistic, intelligence gathering, army aviation and military vehicle manufacturing.

The visit began on 16th January 2019 with a courtesy call to the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff of the Korean Armed Forces, General Park Hanki, at his office. During the visit, both emphasised the need for more collaboration between the Republic of Korean and the Nigerian military especially in the areas of training and equipment support. They also promised to further enhance the relationship between the Republic of Korea military and the Nigerian Army. Lieutenant General TY Buratai also paid similar visit to Chief of Staff Republic of Korean Army, General Kim Yong-woo, where they exchanged ideas and emphasised on the need for further collaboration between both Armies.

Thereafter, the COAS was at the Defence Acquisition Programme Administration (DAPA), at Duteopbawi-ro, Yongsan-gu, Seoul, which was equivalent to Defence Industries of Nigeria (DICON). While there, he interacted with the Minister in charge, Mr Wang Jung Hong and other management staff of DAPA on ways of further collaboration between DAPA and the Nigerian Army.

As part of his itinerary, the COAS also visited the Headquarters of 11th Infantry Division of the Korean Army, at Hong Cheon. On arrival, he was received by the Commander, Major General Kim, who briefed him on the organisation, operations and exploits of the Division. The Division also displayed the sophistication and potency of some of the formation’s equipment and Armoured Fighting Vehicles for the COAS.

On Friday 18th January 2019, the COAS and members of his delegation were at the Corporate headquarters of KIA Motors Corporation, Gwangju, where they were received and briefed by Mr Il -Tae Kim, Director Special Vehicle Global Sales Group. Thereafter, they were conducted round the company’s manufacturing plants particularly the KIA Light Tactical Vehicles manufacturing plants.

The COAS also had another meeting with Mr Il-Seop Lee, the Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Special Vehicle Division of KIA Motors Corporation in Seoul. Present at the occasion was Mr Ik-tae Kim, Director, Special Vehicles Global Sales Group.

The COAS was accompanied on the visit by Major General VO Ezugwu, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of the newly established Nigerian Army Vehicle Manufacturing Company, Brigadier General Hussein Ahmed, Acting Provost Marshall (Army) and the Director, Army Public Relations, Brigadier General SK Usman.

Earlier on arrival at Incheon International Airport, Seoul, on Wednesday 16th January 2019, the COAS and the entourage were received by Mr Gabriel Olufemi Asaolu, a Minister with Nigerian Embassy at Seoul, Republic of Korea, Nigeria’s Defence Adviser to Beijing, Major General TOB Ademola, Navy Commodore EO Ferreira, Nigeria’s Defence Adviser to New Delhi, Republic of Korean military delegation and some officials of Kia Motors Corporation. They also accompanied the COAS delegation throughout the visit.

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Onnoghen: Nabena cautions South-south leaders, governors, others over threats

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Justice Walter Onnoghen

Justice Walter Onnoghen


The threats and comments by some South-south leaders, Niger Delta agitators and South-south governors of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) over the prosecution of the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Walter Onnoghen has been condemned by a Chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Speaking with newsmen on Sunday in Abuja, Yekini Nabena, the APC Deputy National Publicity Secretary said the attempt to give Justice Onnoghen’s prosecution at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) over false asset declaration an ethnic colouration is dangerous, unacceptable and totally misplaced.

“The Chief Justice of Nigeria, Walter Onnoghen has already confirmed inadvertent discrepancy in his asset declaration, although the law says ignorantia legis neminem excusat (meaning: ignorance of law excuses no one). The right and proper thing is to allow the CCT or any other empowered judicial body look at the allegation contained in the petition, consider Justice Onnoghen’s defence and take a judicial decision.

“Resort to blackmail, ethnic coloration, inciting statements and threats to sabotage the country’s economic assets by the South South leaders, Niger Delta agitators and South South governors of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) over the legitimate prosecution must be condemned by all.

“They will be held responsible for any breakdown of the peace in the Niger Delta that has sustained since the advent of the President Muhammad Buhari government.

“The fight against corruption and ensuring the rule of law is blind to ethnic, religious, social, economic and political standing of whoever is accused or indicted for breach of our laws.” The Bayelsa-born APC chieftain stated.

Citing a court decision, Nganjiwa vs FRN (2017)LPELR-43391(CA), Nabena dismissed arguments of the jurisdiction of the Code of Conduct Tribunal to entertain the petition against the Chief Justice of Nigeria without recourse to the National Judicial Commission.

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