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Delta senator, James Manager, denies receiving NDDC contracts

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Senator representing Delta South Senatorial District in the National Assembly, James Manager, has denied receiving contracts from the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) even while serving as the Senate Committee Chairman on NDDC.

The minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, had on Sunday named Manager as one of the members of the National Assembly, who got contracts from the NDDC. The minister listed Senator Manager’s name against 6 projects.

NDDC executive director of projects, Dr. Cairo Ojougboh, had also accused the lawmaker of benefiting from contracts of the NDDC

But reacting to the allegations, Senator Manager in a statement on Monday threatened to legal action against the Commission’s Executive Director of Projects for defamation if he fails to name the companies through which he allegedly collected the contracts.

He said, “I sincerely wish to react as follows: My tenure as chairman of Niger Delta committee in the senate effectively ended in 2015.

“That ever since then I have never visited NDDC headquarters in Port Harcourt or any of its branches.

“That NDDC never awarded any contract to any company owned by me. That I do not know of any company owned by me, that has ever gone into bidding of government job anywhere in the world.( This may come to many as a surprise many but that is the gospel truth).”

While challenging Ojougboh for proof of evidence, the Manager noted that “That those who are alleging to defame me must be aware of the consequences.

“That in the interest of the gullible innocent public, the authors led by the said Dr. Cairo Ojugboh or any other person should provide among other things the following please;

“(A) detailed description of the said jobs. (B) names of companies. (C) payments already made and to whom?. (D) job performance. (E) The Directors as they appear in the Corporate Affairs Commission(CAC).

“That I sincerely in the name God request for proof of evidence. This is a very simple minimum demand.”

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NIGERIA

Nigerian Navy deploys 6 warships, 60 gunboats for operation in 4 States

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The Nigerian Navy on Tuesday deployed troops on board six warships and 60 gunboats for a special military exercise.

The drill targets pirates, oil smugglers and other criminalizes in the nation’s waters.

Rear Admiral David Adeniran, Flag Officer Commanding Eastern Naval Command (ENC), Calabar, made the announcement.

He spoke at the flag-off of the exercise in Onne, Rivers State

The operation code-named, ‘Exercise Sanga Sung,’ means ‘Safe Transit’ in Ibibio dialect.

The States to be covered are Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Ebonyi and Rivers.

The commander explained the operation would consolidate ‘Exercises Bekan Mmon I and II’

Adeniran added that the purpose was to train personnel and check the state of preparedness of fleets.

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NIGERIA

Buhari reports Boko Haram, bandits to UN

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday told the international community that Nigeria was still battling Boko Haram and bandits.

Buhari’s message was contained in his pre-recorded address to the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).

He urged countries to take a strong action against illicit flow of small arms and light weapons.

“Nigeria remains deeply concerned over the illicit trade, transfer, and circulation of small arms and light weapons, particularly on the continent of Africa. In Nigeria, we are still facing violent extremism from the insurgency of Boko Haram and bandits,” he said.

He noted that Nigeria counts on cooperation with neighbours and UN counter-terrorism bodies to overcome terrorists in the Lake Chad Basin and the wider Sahel Region.

The President said his administration will sustain the rehabilitation, reconstruction and resettlement of victims of terrorism and insurgency in the North-East.

On COVID-19, the Nigerian leader added his voice to supply of safe and effective coronavirus vaccines for all.

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NIGERIA

Over 30 people killed, as tanker collides with Keke Napep in Kogi

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It was another black Wednesday in Lokoja, the Kogi State capital, as over 30 persons were burnt alive when a tanker collided with a tricycle.

The incident which happened at about 9am on Wednesday also saw a family of six burnt to ashes in a Toyota Sienna bus.

The incident which saw victims helpless as they burnt beyond recognition, occurred along the ever busy Lokoja/ Okene/ Abuja road.

Also, among the casualties, were Kogi State Polytechnic students, school bus conveying primary and secondary school students, residents and passersby.

Eyewitness account revealed that the petrol tanker which was coming from the Okene while making its way to the northern part of the country had a failed break which led to the accident.

It was gathered that more than 10 vehicles were burnt to ashes at the scene of the incident.

As at the time of filing this report, the personnel of the Federal Road Safety Corps, FRSC, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, the Police were seen evacuating dead bodies to the morgues.

This is not the first time a fatal accident happened in this area.

In 2019, more than 25 persons lost their lives at the same spot.

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