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Election Rigging: 3 varsity dons to face trial, 3 INEC staff sacked

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INEC’s Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in Akwa Ibom, Mr. Mike Igini, on Tuesday, said that three university lecturers had been confirmed to have been involved in electoral malpractice during the 2019 general elections.

Igini also told newsmen in Uyo, that three officials of the electoral body had also been sacked over-involvement in electoral malpractice.

According to him, the three university teachers will soon be charged to court.

Igini, however, did not mention the names of the institutions and the areas where the malpractice took place.

“The lecturers, who were engaged as Collation and Returning Officers during the 2019 general elections, were reported to have manipulated and falsified election results.

“As I speak to you, not less than three of the staff of the commission from the ICT Unit and those in the rank of executive and administrative officers were also involved in actions that completely undermined the electoral process and integrity of the commission,” he said.

He said that the suspects compromised their positions and produced outcomes contrary to the will of the people, as expressed through the ballot.

“A panel we set up subsequently established a prima facie documentary evidence of deliberate criminal manipulation of election results against the Collation/Returning Officers,” Igini said.

He said that the involvement of the three INEC staff from the ICT unit had been proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

“This action has become absolutely necessary because of the unsustainable belief by some members of the public that the commission does not sanction persons involved in electoral malpractices during elections.

“We must have an institution that has the integrity to protect the will of the people in any election.

“Punishing those involved in unwholesome electoral activities will serve as a lesson and a clear message to those who will be engaged by INEC in the future.

“It is good for them to know that INEC in Akwa Ibom will always be transparent. People engaged as presiding officers are a very important link. They are the last set of people in charge of election materials, particularly the ballot papers and result sheets,” the REC said.

He regretted that in spite of the training given to the electoral officers and staff of the commission, they went a different way and chose to involve themselves in unethical conduct.

Igini lamented that the officials manipulated and falsified election results, thereby producing outcomes that were contrary to the will of the people.

“Following a formal request by the Commission, the authorities of the affected institutions released the lecturers to appear before an investigative panel set up by INEC Headquarters on Aug. 12 and 26, 2020,” he revealed.

Igini noted that the INEC workers sacked were shown the way out “in line with the extant rules and the power of the commission to appoint, dismiss and to exercise disciplinary control over its staff”

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NIGERIA

Soldier shoots man for not wearing a face mask

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A soldier allegedly shot a 27-year-old man in South Africa during an argument over why he was not wearing a face mask in line with Covid-19 regulations.

Police spokesperson Brig Motlafela Mojapelo, who confirmed the report on Friday, said the incident happened at a shopping complex in Mogwadi, Limpopo, on Thursday, September 17.

“Members of the national defense force were reportedly on duty monitoring Covid-19 compliance in the area when they approached a group of people who were not wearing face masks,” Mojapelo said on Friday.

“When asked why they were not wearing masks, an argument allegedly ensued and one of the soldiers shot the victim. The injured 27-year-old man was rushed to the hospital.

“The soldier, aged 29, was arrested and charged with attempted murder,” said Mojapelo. The soldier is due to appear in the Morebeng magistrate’s court on Friday.

 

Soldier shoots man for not wearing a face maskSoldier shoots man for not wearing a face maskSoldier shoots man for not wearing a face maskSoldier shoots man for not wearing a face mask

 

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NIGERIA

FG apologises for asking all bank, other account holders to re-register

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The Federal Government has apologized for asking all account holders in the country’s financial institutions to register their details again.

It was reported already that the FG earlier asked all account holders in banks, including insurance companies, to fill and submit a Self-Confirmation form.

The order was given despite the possession of the Bank Verification Number and the National Identification Number by account holders on Thursday.

Failure to do so, the Nigerian government threatened to block access to defaulters’ accounts or impose a monetary penalty.

The order to fill another Self-Confirmation form, despite the existing BVN and NIN, had attracted condemnations on social media.

However, in a tweet on Friday, the government apologized for misinformation.

It tweeted, “We apologize for the misleading tweets (now deleted) that went up yesterday, regarding the completion of self-certification forms by Reportable Persons. The message contained in the @firsNigeria Notice does not apply to everybody. FIRS will issue appropriate clarification shortly.”

In a press statement, the Federal Inland Revenue Service explained that only “reportable persons” are expected to submit the form.

The statement read, “This is to clarify the publication for financial institutions account holders in Nigeria to complete the self-certification form, pursuant to the Income Tax (Common Reporting Standard) Regulations 2019 which is for the fulfillment of Automatic Exchange of Information Requirements.

“The Self Certification form is basically to be administered on Reportable persons holding accounts in Financial institutions that are regarded as “Reportable Financial Institutions” under the CRS.

“Reportable persons are often non-residents. And other persons who have a residence for tax purposes in more than one jurisdiction or Country.

“Financial Institutions are expected to administer the Self Certification form on such account holders when the information at its disposal indicates that the Account holder is a person resident for tax purpose in more than one jurisdiction.

“The information that indicates an account holder is a resident for tax purposes in more than one jurisdiction, is expected to be available to Financial Institutions during the account opening processes for the KYC and AML purpose.”

Earlier, the Nigerian government said all persons holding accounts in different financial institutions are required to complete and submit the form to each one of their institutions.

It had tweeted, “This is to notify the general public that all account holders in Financial Institutions (Banks, Insurance Companies, etc) are required to obtain, complete, and submit Self – Certification Forms to their respective Financial Institutions.

“Failure to comply with the requirement to administer or execute this form attracts sanctions which may include monetary penalty or inability to operate the account.”

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NIGERIA

Gunmen kidnap two undergraduates, five others in Kaduna community

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Gunmen in the early hours of Friday invaded Barkallahu, Igabi Local Government Area of Kaduna State, kidnapping seven persons.

Among the seven persons kidnapped, five persons were members of the same family.

The bandits, it was gathered invaded the community about 1:30 am on Friday and shot indiscriminately as they went from house-to-house to pick their victims.

A resident, Abdulsalam Haruna, said the gunmen went away with his wife and four children.

Haruna, who spoke to newsmen, said two of the children were students of the Federal University, Malunfashi in Katsina State.

He also said the hoodlums left with two of his neighbour’s children, adding that the bandits attacked two other houses in the area, including that of a retired director in the Kaduna State Ministry of Education.

Haruna said, “The incident happened about 1:30 am (on Friday). They broke my gate and came into my compound. They broke the door to my house and ordered everybody to follow them.

“They went away with my wife and four of my children, two of which are students of the Federal University, Malumfashi, Katsina State.

“They also attacked my neighbour and went away with two of his children.

“Two other houses, including that of a retired director in the Kaduna Ministry of Education, were also attacked, but they did not kidnap anybody or carry anything there.

“We alerted the personnel but by the time they arrived, the bandits had escaped with the victims.”

The Kaduna State Police Command has yet to confirm the incident as the Public Relations Officer, ASP Mohammed Jalige, could not be reached.

Jalige had also yet to reply to a text message sent to his mobile phone as of the time of filing this report.

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