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Nigerians Using Social Media to Instigate Violence, Buhari Laments

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President Muhammadu Buhari
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 By Mathew Dadiya, Abuja

President Muhammadu Buhari has said that technology has been abused as a tool for instigating violence, instead of its good intent.

The President made the assertion on Friday, when he received in audience the Chairman and Board members of the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria FRCN, at the State House, Abuja.

The President said: “Generally, technology has been enabler for good. However, in recent times, we are seeing this platform more and more being used to instigate violence and hate. 

“Nowhere is this disturbing trend more apparent than in the various media platforms, where fake news is gaining momentum and is being used to divide and destabilise communities and indeed nations around the world.

“We see images being manipulated to give legitimacy to lies.

We hear voices on radio preaching falsehood and hatred. We also read stories that are already sponsored by individuals who stand to gain at the expense of truth, peace and harmony,” he said.

The Nigerian leader said that despite all these, the powerful weapon that can counter such manipulations is truth.

“Like I mentioned a few months ago, at the World Economic Forum in Jordan, since digital information age is borderless, this means we must be ready to respond with the best weapon we have; truth,” he said.

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The president therefore, urged journalists to save their profession by tackling the growing trend of fake news.

“Journalism as a profession is primarily based on being truthful. With the growing increase in fake news, the future of your profession is under threat and therefore you must be ready to correct this and safeguard your professionalism and reputation,” the President advised.

The President charged the FRCN to proactively develop programmes based on truth, facts and broader national interest.

“You should also have strategies to react to fake information and sensitise our citizens not to believe stories at face value especially when the source is unknown or not credible, where supporting facts are not available.”

Commenting on the requests presented by the FRCN Board, the President advised the Corporation to make a formal presentation through their supervising ministry.

In his remarks, the Board Chairman of FRCN, Aliyu Hayatu, advocated more funding for the broadcast outfit, in order to compete favourably with its equals.

“It should be noted here, Mr President, that powerful foreign countries such as Germany, China, Britain France and the US, spend the equivalent of billions of Naira of their tax payers’ money to broadcast in local Nigerian languages.

“Only recently the British government set aside about two hundred and seventy million pounds sterling, the equivalent of one hundred and thirty-five billion naira, to enable the BBC expand and boost its foreign languages broadcast. As part of this expansion, the BBC is now broadcasting in lgbo, Yoruba and Pidgin English, in addition to the well establish Hausa language broadcast which has now been on, for well over fifty years.

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“The sponsors of these foreign broadcast outfits are not competing with each other in broadcasting to Nigerians for immediate gains in terms of Naira and Kobo. The competition is for the soul and mind of Nigerians. The regrettably disturbing result is that because of the very weak transmission capability of particularly, the FRCN, Nigerians are left with no option but to listen more and more to these foreign radio broadcasts,” he said.

He pledged FRCN’s unwavering support for the success of the current administration’s next level agenda.

CRIME

Troops arrest 10 Robbers, rescue 3 Victims in Kaduna 

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By Gom Mirian, Abuja 

The military high command, yesterday said its troops deployed on internal operations in Kaduna state has arrested ten armed robbery suspects at Kafanchan town in Jema’a local government area of the state. 

A statement issued by the Director, Defence Media Operations, Major General Bernard Onyeuko stated the names of the arrested suspects as: Messrs Manga Ismail, a 22 – year-old, Idris Haruna (Ban Sambo), 20- year-old, Sani Bali, 19- year-old.

 

Others are Shamsudeen Ladan, 25 – year-old, Abdulmajid Yau (Sele), 22 – year – old , Abubakar Hassan, 23 – year-old, Abbas Aliyu, 15 – year-old, Mohammed Umar (Jazuli), 17 – year – old, Jonathan Vincent (Bamai), 19 – year-old and Stephen Joseph, 25 – year-old.

According to him, items recovered from the criminals include: TV, DVD, gas cookers, Mattresses, woofer, phones, scissors, among others.

 

Gen. Onyeuko also said on the same day, troops acting on intelligence reports, conducted a cordon search operation at Fanock Village, Jema’a Local Government Area of Kaduna State and found a Toyota Corolla car with registration number ABUJA KUJ 452 AZ with no occupant. 

Onyeuko explained that Troops conducted search operations in the surrounding bush and rescued 3 kidnaped civilians comprising two females and a male. 

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Speaking further, he said :”Troops of Operation SAFE HAVEN in a sustained effort to eliminate criminals elements in their Area of operation on 28 June 2022 based credible intelligence conducted clearance operation in conjunction with vigilantes at Kan Duniya Village, Barkin Ladi Local Government Area, Plateau State, neutralized notorious bandit and kidnapper.

“Similarly, on the same day, troops on fighting patrol sighted 2 x suspected kidnappers around Sara High Ground Mangu Local Government Area Plateau State on a motor cycle, suspects abandoned their motor cycle on sighting troops and fled.

” Troop exploited area and recovered 2 AK47 rifles, 101 rounds of 7.62mm special, 5 magazines, 1 motor cycle, 1 iron digger and 2 black jackets amongst others”, he said. 

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Foreign News

Husband of Slain Kenyan Runner Tirop Seeks Plea Bargain

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The husband of slain Kenyan distance runner Agnes Tirop is seeking a plea bargain after initially denying a charge of murder, his lawyer said yesterday.

Tirop, a rising star in the world of athletics, was killed last October in her home in Iten, a high-altitude training hub in western Kenya for top runners.

Emmanuel Ibrahim Rotich was arrested after a dramatic late-night chase the day after Tirop’s body was found with stab wounds, and has been in custody ever since.

The 41-year-old denied a charge of murder at a November court appearance.

But in the latest twist in the legal saga, his lawyer Ngigi Mbugua told the Eldoret High Court that Rotich was willing to plead guilty to a lesser charge in the hope of attracting a more lenient sentence.

The prosecution said it was not against the idea of a plea bargain but wanted Tirop’s family to be involved in the process.

A hearing on Rotich’s request will take place on 22 September.

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NEWS

HEDA Petitions ICPC over Allegations against Ex-CJN

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The Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA Resource Centre) has petitioned the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) over the allegations against the immediate past Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Tanko Muhammad.

This is contained in a statement issued by the Chairman, HEDA, Mr Olanrewaju Suraju, yesterday in Lagos.

Suraju, in a letter to the Chairman of ICPC, Professor Bolaji Owasanoye, urged the commission to stand tall over the allegations of corruption, maladministration and incompetence leveled against Muhammad.

“As a leading anti-corruption organisation in Nigeria and non-partisan human rights and development league, we call on the ICPC to commence investigation into the budgetary allocation, utilisation and development process of the judiciary with a view to sanitisation of that critical arm of government,” he said.

Suraju said it was widely reported that the immediate past CJN responded to the allegations brought against him by 14 Justices on the aforementioned allegations.

“It is unarguable that the judiciary is the last hope of the helpless and its judges are only meant to be heard and not seen.

“However, these allegations made by fellow Justices of the apex court against the CJN cannot be overlooked as it is weighty and must be diligently investigated by the commission in order to protect that vital institution.

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“If the Supreme Court of Nigeria is infested with corrupt persons, then our democracy is doomed, ICPC and others relevant bodies should rise and act fast to redeem the temple of justice from possible collapse,” HEDA said. (NAN)

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