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Jihadists kill all male Christians in two Nigerien towns, women flee

Jihadists in Niger Republic have killed all the male Christians in Fantio and Dolbel, two towns in the Tillabéri region in the south west. Survivors of the attack, a group of women, with small children and babies fled to the Dori region of Burkina Faso. AID TO THE CHURCH IN NEED (ACN), which reported the attacks, quoted the women as saying the terrorists attacked the towns twice, killing the men. The two towns were abandoned by the rest of the inhabitants. In Fantio, the jihadists took a statue of the Virgin Mary, liturgical books and musical instruments and burned them. They then desecrated the Blessed Sacrament by throwing the sacred hosts on the ground and finally setting the church on fire. This is the third parish in this part of Niger that has been abandoned due to terrorist attacks ...

Leaked testimony from Haiti suspects says plan was to arrest, not kill president

A group of Colombians and Haitian Americans suspected of assassinating Haitian President Jovenel Moise told investigators they were there to arrest him, not kill him, the Miami Herald and a person familiar with the matter said on Sunday. Moise was shot dead early on Wednesday at his Port-au-Prince home by what Haitian authorities say was a unit of assassins made up of 26 Colombians and two Haitian Americans, plunging the troubled Caribbean nation into deeper turmoil. The murder and uncertainty about who hatched the plot is the latest in a succession of blows to hit the struggling country, which has appealed for international help. Washington has so far rebuffed Haiti’s request for troops, though a senior U.S. official said on Sunday that Washington was sending a technical team to assess th...

Yahaya Bello: Nigeria deserves the best captain no matter where he comes from

The Governor of Kogi State, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, has said that rather engage on the unconstitutional issue of rotational presidency, what Nigerians should focus on is look for that Nigerian, no matter where he comes, who can be the captain to pilot the country to the promised land. The governor who stated this at the First Annual Governor Yahaya Bello (GYB) Seminar for Nigeria’s Political and Crime Correspondents/Editors at the Transcorp Hilton, Abuja, said that even after 16 years of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and another six years of All Progressives Congress (APC), in the country, the problems of the nation has not been solved by the rotational presidency that has taken place over the years. Bello insisted that the political party must not limit the choice of Nigerians to any region...

Haiti asks US, UN to send troops after president’s assassination

Haiti has asked Washington and the UN for troops to secure its ports, airport and other strategic sites after the assassination of President Jovenel Moise opened a power vacuum in the crisis-hit Caribbean nation, an official said Friday. The United States has already said it will send FBI and other agents to Port-au-Prince, two days after Moise was shot dead in his home. In the wake of the slaying “we thought that mercenaries could destroy some infrastructure to create chaos … During a conversation with the US secretary of state and the UN we made this request,” elections minister Mathias Pierre told AFP. The US State Department and Pentagon both confirmed receiving a request for “security and investigative assistance” and said officials remain in contact with Port-au-Prince, but did not s...

Haiti police say they have president’s suspected killers, still hunting masterminds

Haiti’s police has killed or apprehended the suspected killers of President Jovenel Moise, officials said on Thursday, and are hunting for the masterminds behind the assassination that stunned the impoverished Caribbean nation. Moise, 53, was shot dead early on Wednesday at his home by what officials said was a commando of apparently foreign, trained killers, pitching the poorest country in the Americas deeper into turmoil amidst political divisions, hunger, and widespread gang violence. Police Chief Leon Charles said in a televised briefing on Thursday that authorities had tracked down the suspected assassins to a house near the scene of the crime in Petionville, a northern suburb of the capital Port-au-Prince. A fierce firefight lasted late into the night and six suspects were taken in c...

Yobe governor: No plan to retrench workers

Gov. Mai Mala-Buni of Yobe on Tuesday said his administration has no plan to retrench civil servants in spite of the state’s meagre resources. Mala-Buni gave the assurance in Damaturu on the sidelines of the swearing-in ceremony of newly appointed permanent secretaries and board members. He said he would continue to attract investments to Yobe from both state and non-state actors in order to meet the financial obligations of the state. “People accuse me of frequenting Abuja; the truth is, if I remain in Damaturu, we cannot pay even our salary bills. “And that means we will have to join the league of states that are retrenching workers; we don’t have such plan. “You are aware of the projects we started, including the four modern markets we are building, the ongoing 3,600 houses, the over 87...

Ethiopia urges Tigray rebels to join ceasefire, hostilities persist

Ethiopia’s government urged Tigrayan rebels to join a unilateral ceasefire in their conflict on Thursday as aid agencies struggled to reach hundreds of thousands of people facing famine. The Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), the former rulers of Ethiopia’s Tigray region, said on Monday it was back in control of the regional capital Mekelle after nearly eight months of fighting. The government declared a unilateral ceasefire but the TPLF dismissed it as a joke. Hostilities persisted on Thursday and pressure built internationally for all sides to pull back. “Operations are under way … and the number of prisoners of war is increasing by the minute,” TPLF spokesman Getachew Reda told Reuters by satellite phone, with light artillery fire crackling in the background. “We are closing in on...

Ethiopia says army can re-enter seized Tigray capital Mekelle in weeks

The Ethiopian army could re-enter the seized Tigray regional capital of Mekelle within weeks if needed, a spokesman for a government task force said on Wednesday, adding that government-allied Eritrean forces had withdrawn from the region. It was the first public statement by a federal government official since Mekelle was taken by Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) forces this week in a major turn of events after eight months of conflict in which thousands of people have been killed. read more People in Mekelle, where communications were down on Wednesday, said on Monday incoming Tigrayan fighters had been greeted with cheers. There were similar scenes in the northern town of Shire on Wednesday, where Eritrean forces had pulled out and Tigrayan forces had entered, residents said. Peo...

AfreximBank to support Ogun infrastructural development with $200 million

The African Export-Import Bank (Afrexim) has disclosed its plans to support infrastructural development in Ogun State with an envelope of $200m. The fund, according to the bank, will be dedicated towards projects and other developmental initiatives embarked upon by the incumbent administration in the state. The President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Afrexim Bank, Benedict Oramah, who made this known when he led management of the bank on a courtesy visit to Governor Dapo Abiodun at his Oke-Mosan Office, Abeokuta, on Monday, equally said the bank would partner Ogun on ensuring that the 250-bed Specialist Hospital, Abeokuta, is completed and begin operations soon. Oramah, while noting that the bank has been investing heavily in the health sector in Africa to develop vaccines ...

Russians nationals detained in Chad desert say they are tourists

A group of Russians detained by the police in a part of northern Chad where the army has been battling a rebel invasion from Libya said on Wednesday that they were tourists who had come to sightsee in the Sahara Desert. The roughly 10 Russians were picked up last week by the police near the town of Faya Largeau because they were in a military operational zone, according to national police spokesperson Amane Issac Azina. Azina said they had not broken any laws and had not been arrested, but rather evacuated to the capital N’Djamena for their own safety. “We decided this time to visit the Republic of Chad because it is very interesting,” one of the Russians, Alexey Kamerzanov, told Reuters at an N’Djamena hotel. “Usually world travellers do not visit the Republic of Chad because it’s not the...

APC chieftain: Senator Sheriff used his empire to handpick Kashim Shettima as Borno governor in 2011

File Photo A chieftain in the All Progressive Congress (APC) and a former law maker in the Nasarawa state House of Assembly, Hon. Dr Kassim Mohammad Kassim, has recalled how former Borno Governor Senator Ali Modu-Sheriff installed his successor, Senator Kashim Shettima in 2011. The former Nasarawa lawmaker, who is a stakeholder in the ruling party and a close allied told reporters in Lafia, capital of Nasarawa that Modu-Sheriff practically dragged Shettima from the banking sector and made him Governor using his vast networks and goodwill. Responding to an online publication that averred Modu-Sheriff is unfit to become national chairman of the APC, Kassim said: “The writer forget to mention how Senator Ali Modu Sheriff singlehandedly brought Shettima from the banking sector in 2007 and made...