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“My administration has rescued more than 2000 kidnapped victims” – Gov. Matawalle

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Gov. Bello Matawalle

“My administration has rescued more than 2000 kidnapped victims” – Gov. Matawalle

Gov. Bello Matawalle of Zamfara State has revealed that his administration had rescued more than 2000 kidnapped victims, collected over a thousand weapons from May 29, 2019 when he took over the leadership of the state from both the bandits and members of vigilante operating in the state.

He has also alleged that Banditry was created in the state to scare away investors because of the solid mineral capable of feeding the nation.

Matawalle made these statement at a news conference on Tuesday in Abuja while was reacting to a statements credited to Acting National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr Yekini Nabena, who alleged that he was harboring, sponsoring and aiding banditry in the North Western Nigeria.

He said that the allegations are so weighty that cannot be swept under a carpet especially when it concerns human lives, humanity and dignity.

He emphasized that since he assumed duty as the governor of Zamfara State his priority was how to secure the state from its immediate past position of being the most dangerous to visit or leave” due to waves of attacks, killing, maiming, kidnappings, cattle rustling and vandalization of public property and assets that bedeviled the state which had consumed over 7000 lives.

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He added that almost a million cattle and related animals rustled by bandits, property and farm produce worth billions of naira belonging to innocent citizens were either destroyed or carted away by criminals.

 

” My efforts in the ongoing peace process have yielded positive results and brought a lot of relief to the people of Zamfara State and indeed the entire north western Nigeria,” Matawalle said.

The governor noted that the basic function of government anywhere was to provide security and safety of lives of the governed as he swore to protect.

Gistflash gathered that He earlier withdrew intention to take the matter to court due to intervention of highly respected organization and individuals and the nod received from Nigeria Governors Forum and the Progressive Governors Forum certifying his efforts in tackling banditry in the region.

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Economy

Twitter makes Ghana its headquarters in Africa, Nigerians React

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Twitter makes Ghana its headquarters in Africa, Nigerians React

Twitter announced today that the company is now in Africa, with its headquarters in Ghana.

“Twitter is now present on the continent. Thank you Ghana and @NakufoAddo,” Twitter CEO, Jack Dorsey tweeted today, April 12.

Abubakar Suleiman, the CEO of Sterling Bank, has weighed in on the conversation about Twitter making Ghana its headquarters in African.

Nigerians reacted to the fact that Ghana, and not Nigeria, was chosen to be the headquarters.

Then Suleiman tweeted: “First you tell the world Nigeria is a zoo.. Then you hear @TwitterSF has chosen @GhanaPresidency as their WA headquarters & you are wondering why.

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“If you can’t sell yourself, nobody will buy you. Nigeria remains the heartbeat of Africa, our current struggles notwithstanding.”

Bank CEO, Abubakar Suleiman blames Nigerians who bad-mouth the country for Twitter’s decision to make Ghana its headquarters in Africa

See Nigerians Reactions Below;

A number of his followers took to the comments to disagree with him and he doubled down, writing: “I think everyone sells. And we should showcase the good things in our country even as we critic the shortcomings..”

 

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Health

COVID-19 Vaccination: Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine may Loose confidence to rare blood clots side-effect

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COVID-19 Vaccination

Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine is the Option offered to under-30s after UK records 79 cases of rare blood clots out of 20m jabs administered

 

Experts warned of damage to confidence in the UK’s vaccine programme after 10 million adults under 30 were told they will be offered an alternative to the Oxford/AstraZeneca jab following concerns over rare blood clots.

Healthy 18 to 29-year-olds who are not at high risk of Covid should have the option of a different jab if one is available in their area, the government’s joint committee on vaccines and immunization (JCVI) said weeks after some European countries suspended the use of AstraZeneca jabs in younger people.

For older people, the benefits of the vaccine – the most widely-used in the UK – far outweigh the risks, the JCVI added. The UK has recorded 79 rare blood clots cases, 19 of whom died, out of 20m AstraZeneca jabs administered.

England’s deputy chief medical officer, Prof Jonathan Van-Tam, called the move “a course correction” and said there should be little or no impact on the vaccine rollout timeline, though he warned that under-30s could face short delays in getting inoculated.

Boris Johnson tweeted: “We will follow today’s updated advice, which should allow people of all ages to continue to have full confidence in vaccines, helping us save lives and cautiously return towards normality.”

Spain Cornella Astrazeneca Covid 19 Vaccine - 07 Apr 2021<br>Mandatory Credit: Photo by Xinhua/REX/Shutterstock (11848049c) A health worker prepares a dose of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination site in Cornella, Spain, April 7, 2021. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) confirmed on Wednesday that the occurrence of blood clots with low blood platelets are strongly associated with the administration of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, but should be still listed as very rare side effects. Spain Cornella Astrazeneca Covid 19 Vaccine - 07 Apr 2021

The recommendation came as it was confirmed that the European regulator is examining whether other vaccines using similar technology to the AstraZeneca jab pose any risk.

There had been three cases of venous thromboembolism blood clots with low platelets involving the Johnson & Johnson jab, a European Medicines Agency (EMA) official said.

Symptoms of the rare brain blood clots include severe headaches and blurred vision, and most cases occur within two weeks of a jab – but such events are treatable if medical help is sought, experts said.

In the UK up to 31 March, there were 79 reports of these rare blood clots with low platelets – some but not all of them in the brain, it was revealed on Wednesday. Of those affected, 19 people died, although it is not known if the blood clots were the cause in every case.

More were women – 51 – and they were all aged 18-79. Three were under 30. But the recommendation of an alternative vaccine for that age group is because their risk from Covid itself is very low.

In older age groups, the experts believe, the benefits of vaccination significantly outweigh the rare side-effect risk, but in younger people “it is more finely balanced”.

Dr June Raine, CEO of the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Authority (MHRA), said the risk was “extremely small” and the authority had not yet concluded that the vaccine was responsible.

“The evidence is firming up. While it is a strong possibility, more work is needed to establish beyond all doubt that the vaccine has caused this side-effect,” she said.

There are concerns, however, that confidence in the AstraZeneca jab has been hit.

“Today’s decision is a severe blow to the public’s vaccine confidence, which is already fragile,” said Dr Chris Papadopoulos, principal lecturer in public health at the University of Bedfordshire. It might be the right decision, but needed to be coupled to efforts to counter vaccine hesitancy, he added.

Prof Martin Hibberd, of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, said it was a sensible decision. “However, I would like to see the evidence that the other vaccines are safer.”

The Royal College of Midwives said young people and pregnant women would be concerned.

“Although pregnant women who are clinically extremely vulnerable are eligible for the vaccine, those under 30 have seen their options severely limited, as the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine is not approved for use for them,” said its executive director, Birte Harlev-Lam.

Pregnant women should discuss vaccination with their doctor. Those who have any history of blood clots should not have the AstraZeneca jab.

It came as the EMA said the rare blood clots would be listed formally as a side-effect of the AstraZeneca vaccine, though it did not announce any restrictions on use. Several EU countries, including France and Germany, have already limited use to citizens aged over 55 or 60, or suspended its use entirely.

Emer Cooke, executive director of the EMA, said: “In the UK, I cannot comment on the decision-making to restrict to a certain age but what I can tell you is there is a lot more use in the younger age groups in the UK than in the EU at the moment and we will certainly take this into account in our further evaluations.”

 

Asked why European countries have different stances from the UK, Adam Finn from the JCVI said Britain had “extremely detailed data” based on a high number of administered AstraZeneca jabs.

“I think other countries in Europe that have seen clusters of cases … they are not in such a good evidence-driven position to make their judgments,” he said, adding that “the risk-benefit [equation] does vary … from one country to another”.

The EMA said it could not identify the cause of the blood-clotting event, which was mostly, but not entirely, in women under 60.

It is advising that healthcare professionals and people getting the vaccine should be made aware of the issue and the symptoms of the clots, which range from shortness of breath and chest pain to persistent headaches and blurred vision.

“It is of great importance that healthcare professionals and people coming for vaccination are aware of these risks and look out for signs or symptoms,” said Cooke.

Like the EMA, the MHRA is a regulator and an adviser on safety and efficacy to governments.

The UK recommendation that under-30s should be offered an alternative vaccine comes from the JCVI. Its head, Prof Wei Shen Lim, said it had only made the recommendation to government “out of the utmost caution rather than because we have any serious safety concerns”.

Dr Peter Arlett, the head of the EMA data analytics and methods taskforce, said the agency was examining whether other vaccines posed any risk, citing cases of rare blood clots involving the Johnson & Johnson jab.

“There have been three cases with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine of blood clots associated with low platelets which have some similarities to these cases that we’ve been describing today,” he said.

“However, the numbers are extremely small compared with the 5 million patients that have received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine worldwide. This is, however, under close scrutiny, the [committee] is looking at it carefully, and I think it would be fair to say there’s intensive monitoring of this issue across the vaccines.”

A UK government spokesperson said: “The Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine is safe, effective and has already saved thousands of lives.

“Everybody who has already had a first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine should receive a second dose of the same brand, irrespective of age, except for the very small number of people who experienced blood clots with low platelet counts from their first vaccination.”

 

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#EndSARS

Enact anti-open grazing law or face mass protests worse than #EndSARS – NYP Speaker tells S/East Governors

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The Honorable Speaker of Ndigbo Youth Parliament (NYP), Rt. Hon. Rikki Nwajiofor, bemoans the incessant attacks and killings of innocent Ndigbo in their own ancestral home by suspected armed herdsmen.

In his press statement made available to media houses on Saturday morning, Rikki Nwajiofor condemned the unabated attacks and killings going on in Igbo speaking states, orchestrated by the suspected armed herdsmen.

“I condemn, in its entirety, the incessant attacks of the armed herdsmen in Igbo speaking states and Nigeria at large. These unabated attacks often result to gruesome murder and heartless maiming of innocent citizens in their ancestral homes. Helpless farmers are murdered in their farms and innocent citizens are sent to early graves while in their sleep. This is highly condemnable and can no longer be condoned.”

The Hon. Speaker of Ndigbo Youth Parliament went further to commiserate with the families of the innocent citizens that were slain in Nsukka and Ebonyi state, respectively, by suspected herdsmen. He berated the Governor of Enugu state for his utter silence in the presence of such a heinous act in his state.

“I wish to condole with the families of all those who lost their lives in the hands of the enemies of peace – the armed herdsmen. Such a bereavement comes with excruciating pain and the scars left behind are indelible. We ask the Almighty God to heal the wounds in your heart and grant you the fortitude to bear the irreparable losses as we hope that the souls of the slain will find rest in the bosom of the Lord.

“It is quite heartrending that those we elected to lead us and watch over us, as the Chief Security Officers of our states, have abandoned us to our fate. It is quite appalling and inhumane for the Governor of Enugu state, Rt. Hon. Ugwuanyi, to keep mute in the presence of such heinous act perpetrated in his state and worst still in his Nsukka homestead. How do we explain this? What is the silence for? Is he not perturbed by the devilish activities of these heartless armed herdsmen? This is a clear indication that Enugu state is helpless, security-wise.”

Rt. Hon. Nwajiofor stated that Ndigbo Youths can no longer fold their arms and watch intruders invade their ancestral homes to murder their people.

“I wish to let the world know that ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! Ndigbo Youth are not weaklings neither are we cowards. We are simply Youths of honour who believe in the sanctity of human life and in the sacrosanct nature of human blood. However, you cannot beat a child and ask him not to cry. You cannot push a man to the wall and expect him not to bounce back. It is only a tree that knows it will be cut down and it still stands where it is planted, without doing anything. Ndigbo Youth can no longer fold our arms and watch marauders invade our ancestral homes and murder our people, unabated. No ethnic group has a monopoly of violence! It will no longer be condoned!

“Since our elected political elites have sold their birthrights and consciences for a plate of porridge, seeking political recognition for 2023 and abandoned us to our fate, we shall take our fate in our hands and defend ourselves by all means. We have been law abiding and have been working assiduously for the unity of this Nation but all we get in return is utter marginalization and unwarranted attacks by armed herdsmen. Our farmers can no longer go to farms as the armed herdsmen have taken over our farmlands, forcefully. It is time to resist and uproot the marauders and enemies of a peaceful Nigeria.

“Nigeria does not belong to a particular set of people; Nigeria belongs to all of us and no one can subdue Ndigbo Youth. No one can sit on our heads and balance well. If our elected government cannot save our lives, we shall save our lives in our own way!”

Hon. Rikki Nwajiofor concluded by giving ultimatum to the Governors and the State House of Assembly in all the Igbo speaking states to urgently enact Anti open grazing law or face mass protests from Ndigbo Youths. According to the Hon. Speaker, the protest will be worse than End SARS protest.

“Ndigbo Youth are giving all the Governors, and the state house of Assembly, of all the Igbo speaking states an ultimatum to urgently enact Anti Open Grazing Law in their various states. This ultimatum has a time frame of 3 months. If in the next 3 months there is no enacted law prohibiting open grazing in all the Igbo speaking states, there will be a heavy protest by all Ndigbo Youth across the states. This time, the protest will be more demanding and worse than End SARS protest.

“Failure to enact a law prohibiting open grazing will be a clear indication to Ndigbo Youth that you all have sold us out and no longer care for the safety of our lives and the lives of our parents. In that case, we shall be left with no option than to take laws into our hands. Do not dare the Youth any longer; ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!”

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